Kentucky system drops COVID-19 vaccine mandate for workers

Louisville, Ky.-based Norton Healthcare is no longer requiring that workers receive the COVID-19 vaccine, a spokesperson told the Louisville Courier Journal.

The decision comes as HHS finalizes the end of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate for employees of CMS-certified healthcare facilities, hospitals and health systems.

In early May, HHS announced it would drop the federal COVID-19 vaccine rule, and the Biden administration recently issued an 82-page final rule formalizing the mandate's end.

The new final rule moves to treat COVID-19, from an oversight standpoint, more like the flu. In the new final rule, the federal government notes that hospitals and health systems may still instate their own vaccination requirements for workers, consistent with other federal, state and local laws.  

Maggie Roetker, Norton's director of public relations, told the Courier Journal the change at the health system is in line with these and other federal regulations.

"While COVID-19 vaccination is no longer a requirement for employees, volunteers, vendors and contractors, we do still recommend it to reduce the risk and protect each other and our patients," Ms. Roetker said, according to the newspaper.


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