Pennsylvania to require vaccination - or weekly testing - for roughly 25,000 employees at state-run health facilities
- Approximately 25,000 people are employed at state-run health care or congregate care facilities in
- Beginning September 7, they will either have to be fully vaccinated or undergo weekly testing.
- New hires will be required to get the
Starting next month, employees at state-run hospitals, prisons, and group homes in Pennsylvania will be required to get a COVID-19 vaccine or undergo weekly testing, Gov.
Wolf, a Democrat, said the move was necessary to protect not just employees but the vulnerable people in these health care settings.
"We want our residents and their loved ones to have peace of mind that we are doing everything we can to keep them safe," the governor said in a statement.
The requirement begins September 7 and will affect around 25,000 people. Although current state employees can opt out of the vaccine requirement and undergo weekly testing instead, that option will not be available to new hires.
There is also a carrot: In October, vaccinated state employees will be awarded an extra day of time off.
According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, 63.8% of adults in Pennsylvania are fully vaccinated and nearly 80% have received at least one shot.
Wolf said that the new policy is intended to push that number higher - and provide a model for the private sector.
"As a leading employer in Pennsylvania, the commonwealth must stand up and provide an example for other businesses to follow," he said.
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