Murphy Now Requiring Vaccinations for All Health Care Workers
We've seen Hackensack Meridian Healthcare and RWJ-Barnabas Health in recent weeks enact vaccine ultimatums for workers and now the state of New Jersey is following suit with regards to requiring two shots in the arm.
On Monday, Governor Phil Murphy announced that all workers in "certain state and private health care facilities and high-risk congregate settings" are now required to get vaccinated against the Covid-19 coronavirus or they'll have to get tested for Covid-19 at least 1-2 times per week.
The choice is theirs.
“While reaching our statewide vaccination goal has so far dampened the impact of the Delta variant in New Jersey, some of our most vulnerable populations remain at risk of serious illness or death from COVID-19 primarily due to exposure to unvaccinated individuals,” Governor Murphy said in a Monday statement. “We are taking this step today because it has been proven time and time again that vaccines save lives and are our way out of this pandemic. Individuals in health care facilities should have confidence in their caretakers, and this measure will help ensure peace of mind for those in higher-risk settings. And we are prepared to consider additional measures if we do not see a satisfactory increase in vaccination uptake in those settings as this new requirement is put into effect.”
“Vaccination is the best tool we have to end this pandemic,” New Jersey Department of Health Commissioner Judith Persichilli said in a Monday statement. “None of us would want our vulnerable loved ones put at further risk due to their caregiver or healthcare provider. Ensuring these individuals are fully vaccinated or have been tested will help protect those who live in these congregate settings or need hospital care.”
Murphy and State Health Officials have been pleading for weeks for people all over New Jersey, regardless of what profession, to get vaccinated.
Masks as well.
On Friday, Murphy told Townsquare Media News at an event in Toms River, that he wants everyone to wear a mask indoors.
"We continue to be in the fight with the variant," Murphy told Townsquare Media News. "We just want to reiterate to folks that if you're indoors and you don't have an ability to assess peoples vaccine status, then we're strongly recommending that you wear a mask. Outside, you've got no issue. And most importantly, please get vaccinated. We know that the vaccines work and they're good, not just against generally Covid, but against this Delta variant. It doesn't mean you can't get it, but you're not going to the hospital and thank God you won't be dying, so please, please, please get vaccinated. We need as many people in the state to be vaccinated as possible."
As for those in health care facilities, you'll have until September 7 to be vaccinated or face multi-day-a-week testing.
It does leave some decision-making up to the employer regarding employment status.
"This requirement will not alter any entity’s existing stated policy requiring employees to be fully vaccinated as a condition of employment without a testing alternative. The State will pursue an aggressive testing cadence for settings of particular concern under its purview, including the Veteran’s Homes overseen by the Department of Military and Veterans Affairs are committed to testing unvaccinated workers three times per week," according to Murphy's announcement.
Here are some of the Impacted state settings, according to Governor Murphy:
- Ancora Psychiatric Hospital
- Ann Klein Forensic Center
- Greystone Park Psychiatric Hospital
- Trenton Psychiatric Hospital
- Paramus Veterans Memorial Home
- Menlo Park Veterans Memorial Home
- Vineland Veterans Memorial Home
- Developmental Centers
- University Hospital
- State correctional facilities
- Juvenile Justice Commission Facilities
Here are some of the Impacted private facility settings:
- Long-term care and assisted-living facilities
- County jails
- Acute-care hospitals and specialty hospitals
- Short-term and post-acute in-patient rehabs
- Licensed behavioral health facilities
- Home health agencies