The first hospital in America to mandate a COVID-19 vaccine for all employees is now facing a staffing shortage from infections.
Houston’s Methodist Hospital has hundreds of employees out of work because they tested positive for the virus that causes COVID-19. At the same hospital in 2021, 153 staff members who refused to get vaccinated quit or were fired. Now Methodist leadership is trying to avert a crisis.
“What is worrisome is the climbing number of our employees who cannot work because they are home sick with COVID-19. Almost 400 employees tested positive last week,” Dr. Robert Phillips, the executive vice president and chief physician executive of Houston Methodist, wrote in an internal email on July 12 obtained by The Epoch Times.
“While most of these employees are getting COVID-19 from the community, it is vital that we don’t face a situation where too many employees are out sick and we find ourselves with a staffing shortage,” he added.
Houston Methodist, with a workforce of around 28,000, was the first hospital system in the country to mandate the COVID-19 vaccine for all of its employees. It also was the first system in the nation to mandate the vaccine for its private health care providers who are credentialed members of its medical staff. The hospital later required all its employees to get a vaccine booster by March 1.