Gov. Janet Mills announced on Thursday that health workers will have another month to get the full vaccine against COVID-19.
The change is likely to aim to help employers who are unsure about the impact of the question on their employees. While workers still need to be vaccinated by Oct. 1, the state will not begin enforcing the law until Oct. 29, allowing employers to keep unvaccinated workers on duty and stopping city law enforcement activities. can apply for licenses.
The Democratic governor, who announced the order last month, originally planned to require health workers to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 1 Maine is one of 10 states that have ordered health workers to be vaccinated to a minimum one, but almost all other states allow testing options for non-vaccinated workers. Only doctors can dismiss staff here.
Mills management did not indicate further changes. Maine believes the immunization requirement is a “more effective method” compared with testing, the Department of Health and Human Services Commissioner said Jeanne Lambrew.
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“We’re just trying to cut a little lazy for people who can be a little late or for groups that may need that extra time to be consistent,” Lambrew said.
The extra time will give employers more space to spend a total of $ 146 million in pay-permits authorized earlier this year to nursing homes and other providers meant to support recruitment and retention efforts. The state has also received 10,000 more doses of Johnson & Johnson one-shot medicine to use specifically for healthcare professionals.
The change will help with some of the logistical challenges of hiring immunization staff, said Steven Michaud, chairman of the Maine Medical Association. The Mills initiative was approved by the Michaud team and the Maine Health Care Team, which represents hospitals. Both initially lobbied for the order.
Since its inception, it has become a high-profile political issue in Maine, leading to protests with one as Mills took to the city’s bicentennial program in Lewiston and Auburn last month. The season also proved challenging, as there were staff shortages, rising cases and long-standing staff cases hitting the state health care system last week.
Three hospitals have announced closures this week and we do not expect a change to change those. One of them, Manor National Nursing at Coopers Mills, has cited years of deforestation, rural planning and staff shortages as root causes. But six direct caregivers and a nursing staff also refused to eat the vaccine, something that contributed to the transmission.
“It gives homeless people who want to get vaccinated in time to do so,” said Doug Gardner, vice chairman of operations at North County Associates, which has several Maine and consultants for the owner of Coopers Mills , speaks of the governor’s action.
But it does not deter Republicans, who are drafting legislation that intends to change the order. Assistant Senator Matthew Pouliot, R-Augusta, said the extra time was Mills “making chicken” with people who didn’t want to get vaccinated. He said he was pressuring the administration to consider releasing a test.
“Healthcare professionals know what they are up against after 18 months, and they have decided [the vaccine] not for them, ”he said. “It’s not about money for these people.”