Skip to content
Apply
Stories

Hospitals face staffing shortages, employee clashes as COVID-19 vaccine mandate looms

People in this story

(Photo by Mario Tama/Getty Images)
Registered nurse (RN) Elle Lauron cares for a COVID-19 patient in the improvised COVID-19 unit at Providence Holy Cross Medical Center in the Mission Hills neighborhood on July 30, 2021 in Los Angeles, California.

USA Today, November 2021

For months, Kathy Howell heard grumbling from her fellow nurses and doctors as COVID-19 vaccines became widely available — and a small number of their colleagues refused to get one. “Members of our staff were saying, ‘I can’t believe I work with people who won’t get vaccinated,'” Howell said. “Their colleagues were not happy with them. There definitely were a lot of feelings.”

Those feelings may start getting even more pointed following the Biden administration’s recent announcement that about 17 million healthcare workers must be fully vaccinated by Jan. 4. And experts across the country worry that forcing the nation’s already-stressed 76,000 hospitals, health care clinics and nursing homes to implement vaccine mandates may push critically needed workers to quit as tensions between vaccinated and unvaccinated workers grow.

Of particular concern are rural healthcare facilities already grappling with severe staffing shortages and a proportionally larger number of hesitant workers. Experts say vaccine mandates are necessary because unvaccinated healthcare workers can get patients sick. This spring, two residents of a Kentucky nursing home died after getting COVID-19, even though 90% of their fellow residents had been vaccinated. The source of the infection? Their caregivers, half of whom were unvaccinated, according to federal officials.

Continue reading at USA Today.

More Stories

Secret Service agents stand on the tarmac after President Biden boarded Air Force One at Manchester Airport in New Hampshire in March.

“It is not sustainable for a democracy”: tighter security likely at political events after shooting at Trump rally

07.22.2024
Donald Trump at the Republican National Convention in Milwaukee on July 15.

RNC viewership is plummeting

07.22.2024
Republican vice presidential candidate Sen. J.D. Vance of Ohio and his wife, Usha Chilukuri Vance, arrive on the floor during the first day of the 2024 Republican National Convention at the Fiserv Forum, Monday, July 15, 2024, in Milwaukee.

By tapping JD Vance, Trump charts MAGA’s future

07.23.24
All Stories