MONROE, La. (BRPROUD) — A federal court has blocked a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare employees.
The following is a news release from Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry:
In a major win for our healthcare heroes, a federal court has halted the Biden Administration’s attempt to force COVID-19 vaccines on healthcare workers. Judge Terry Doughty just now ruled in favor of Louisiana Attorney General Jeff Landry’s request for a preliminary injunction against the CMS rule requiring the COVID shot on nearly every full-time employee, part-time employee, volunteer, and contractor working at a wide range of healthcare facilities receiving Medicaid or Medicaid funding.
In granting the injunction, Judge Doughty has issued a nationwide stop to the CMS mandate.
“I applaud Judge Doughty for recognizing that Louisiana is likely to succeed on the merits and for delivering yet another victory for the medical freedom of Americans,” said Attorney General Landry. “While Joe Biden villainizes our healthcare heroes with his ‘jab or job’ edicts, I will continue to stand up to the President’s bully tactics and fight for liberty.”
On November 15, Attorney General Landry led a 14-state coalition filing suit against the Biden Administration for acting without statutory authority, violating the Administrative Procedure Act, violating the Social Security Act, violating the Congressional Review Act, and violating the Constitution by promulgating and implementing Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Omnibus COVID-19 Heath Care Staff Vaccinations, 86 Fed. Reg. 61555 (Nov. 5, 2021).
“While our fight is far from over, I am pleased the Court granted preliminary relief against the President’s unconstitutional and immoral attack on not only our healthcare workers but also the access to healthcare services for our poor and elderly,” concluded Attorney General Landry. “I will see this case through to the end – fighting every step of the way to prevent the federal government from imposing medical tyranny on our citizens and turning last year’s healthcare heroes into this year’s unemployed.”
In response to the ruling above, Prisma Health released the following statement announcing the suspension of vaccine requirement for employees:
At Prisma Health, nothing is more important to us than the health and safety of our patients and the members of our team. Throughout the pandemic, we have encouraged COVID-19 vaccination for everyone who is eligible, and we continue to do so. We have provided more than 462,000 vaccinations to our communities to help fight this pandemic.
The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) had issued an emergency regulation that required all employees working in healthcare facilities to be vaccinated against COVID-19. If facilities did not comply with the regulation, they would be terminated from Medicare and Medicaid programs, which would impact many of our patients.
Yesterday, a U.S. District Judge in Monroe, Louisiana, issued a preliminary injunction, affecting S.C. and other states, blocking CMS from implementing its vaccine mandate for healthcare workers until the court can resolve legal challenges.
Because of this preliminary injunction, we are suspending our COVID-19 team member vaccine requirement. We will continue to monitor this situation. Prisma Health is committed to complying with all federal requirements.
Bon Secours Health System said they will continue as planned.
On Tuesday, Nov. 30, a federal judge ordered a freeze on the federal COVID-19 vaccine requirement for health care workers. The order does not prevent employers from requiring the COVID-19 vaccine. Therefore, Bon Secours will move forward with its previously announced vaccine requirement. The COVID-19 vaccine helps keep employees and patients safe and lessens the likelihood for serious illness and even hospitalization. Exemption requests will be considered for medical contraindication or a sincerely held religious belief.
Spartanburg Regional will suspend the vaccine requirement.
On Tuesday, a federal judge issued a preliminary injunction blocking the federal government from requiring healthcare workers to be vaccinated against COVID-19. South Carolina is one of 14 states that filed a lawsuit to stop the federal mandate.
According to S.C. Attorney General Alan Wilson, while the rule is blocked, the government cannot force healthcare workers to get vaccinated. Therefore, SRHS is placing the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) COVID-19 federal vaccine mandate policy on hold until this preliminary ruling is finalized.
We will continue to monitor this litigation as it proceeds through the federal court system.
AnMed Health will not punish employees for not complying with a pre-existing requirement.
As part of our commitment to the health and safety of our patients and staff, AnMed Health implemented a vaccine policy in August prior to President Biden’s mandate. As of today, 99% of our teammates have complied fully with the policy. We will continue to work with the small number of remaining staff to either receive the vaccine or request an exemption. In consideration of the recent court ruling, however, we will not suspend or terminate employees who are not compliant. We will continue to monitor court and legal developments to ensure our policy is consistent with all applicable regulations.