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NY won't enforce COVID-19 booster requirement for health care workers

The decision to push back on the Feb. 21 deadline was made to avoid potential staffing issues and allow more time for workers to get boosted.

ALBANY, N.Y. — Unboosted health care workers faced with the possibility of losing their jobs next week got a reprieve on Friday.

The New York State Health Department announced the Monday deadline to require health care workers to get a third dose of the COVID-19 vaccine will not go into effect after all. The decision to push back on the Feb. 21 deadline was made to avoid potential staffing issues and allow more time for workers to get boosted.

“The vaccine and booster are critical tools to keep both healthcare workers and their patients safe, and we continue to urge everyone to get vaccinated and receive a booster dose when eligible,” said State Health Commissioner Dr. Mary T. Bassett.

“While we are making progress with 75% of staff received or are willing to receive their booster, the reality is that not enough healthcare workers will be boosted by next week’s requirement in order to avoid substantial staffing issues in our already overstressed healthcare system. That is why we are announcing additional efforts to work closely with healthcare facilities and ensure that our healthcare workforce is up to date on their doses.”

The state will reassess in three months whether additional steps need to be taken to increase booster rates among health care workers. The move does not affect the original vaccination requirement for the healthcare workforce.

Here is the healthcare workforce booster summary as of February 15, 2022.

Credit: NYS DOH

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