New York expands healthcare worker vaccination mandate to mental health staff

New York is expanding the state's healthcare worker COVID-19 vaccination mandate to include employees who work in facilities treating mental health patients and people with developmental disabilities.

The mandate now applies to employees working at the psychiatric hospitals in the Office of Mental Health network, as well as those working at the specialty hospital certified by the Office for People with Developmental Disabilities, according to an Oct. 5 news release from Gov. Kathy Hochul's office. These individuals must receive at least the first shot of a vaccine series by Nov. 1, with no test-out option.

Ahead of the Nov. 1 deadline, staff in the affected settings must submit to weekly testing, if unvaccinated, beginning Oct. 12, the governor's office said.

"Vaccine requirements work in getting people to do the right thing, and all professionals in health settings must take every basic precaution against COVID-19, including the vaccine, so they do not spread the virus to the people coming in for treatment," Ms. Hochul said in the news release. "We have an obligation to extend this assurance to those who need to receive mental health services and special care, which is why we are making the vaccine mandatory for all staff who work in these facilities that fall under state jurisdiction." 

New York's mandate required healthcare workers at hospitals and nursing homes regulated by the Department of Health to receive their first vaccine dose by Sept. 27. Workers at other places covered by the mandate, including diagnostic and treatment centers, home health agencies, long-term home healthcare programs, school-based clinics and hospice care programs regulated by the Department of Health, must have at least one dose by Oct. 7.

While the state's vaccination rate among healthcare workers climbed ahead of the Sept. 27 mandate deadline, some workers refused to comply.

Copyright © 2024 Becker's Healthcare. All Rights Reserved. Privacy Policy. Cookie Policy. Linking and Reprinting Policy.


Featured Whitepapers

Featured Webinars