The North Carolina hospital’s network removes about 175 employees for not being vaccinated
A large North Carolina hospital network said Tuesday it has laid off about 200 workers for failing to vaccinate against Covid-19.
Dr. David H., Head of Safety at Novent Health. Priest said in a briefing that about 175 employees do not meet the system’s vaccination deadline.
“By doing so, without vaccination, he resigned voluntarily,” Priest said.
The departure will not affect the hospital’s staff of more than 35,000 staff, Priest said, as the hospital is using temporary staff members throughout the outbreak to make up for the shortage of staff who have fallen ill due to covid.
Novent Health, a non-profit healthcare system headquartered in Winston-Salem, operates more than 15 medical centers and many other facilities in North Carolina, South Carolina and Georgia.
The priest said a “data point that remains stable” means Kovid is being hospitalized unsafely in Novent Health facilities.
“As of this morning, 97 percent of patients with Covid-19 in our ICU, 98 percent of Covid patients on ventilators are currently unvaccinated,” Priest said. “It’s a non-vaccinated epidemic – there are occasional breakthrough cases, but you can still see that the vaccines have survived.”
In a statement, Novent Health said employees who receive religious or medical exemptions must use additional protective equipment and submit for weekly coronavirus testing.
“We are delighted that the majority of team members have provided good protection to patients and visitors of Novent Health, as well as our team members, against Covid-19,” Novent Health said in a statement.
The priest said “it’s okay” if a small number of people were upset about the need.
“We’ve been in a deadly epidemic for 19 months, there have been 680,000 American deaths and we can’t contribute to that number at once. One is too high,” he said.
President Joe Biden announced new vaccination orders this month that affect federal workers and contractors, as well as Medicaid and Medicare providers – including hospitals – after vaccination rates fell behind the spring peak.
Firing in Novent Health marks the largest staff outflow since hospitals required vaccinations this year.
In Houston, more than 150 people resigned or were removed in June because of the need for a Houston Methodist Hospital system vaccine.
Six people were fired in June at RWJBarnabas Health in New Jersey for not being vaccinated