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Columbus Hospitals Will Require COVID Vaccines For Employees

A nurse prepares a Moderna vaccination at a Columbus vaccine clinic.
Dan Konik
Ohio Public Radio
A nurse prepares a Moderna vaccination at a Columbus vaccine clinic.

Health systems in Central Ohio will soon be requiring COVID-19 vaccines for their employees.

Ohio State Wexner Medical Center is requiring that all faculty, staff and students have at least one dose of the coronavirus vaccine by October 15. Nationwide Children's Hospital announced employees, care providers, volunteers and vendors must be fully vaccinated by October 1. Ohio Health also announced that it will require full vaccinations for all of its 35,000 employees and volunteers by December 1.

Mount Carmel Health System's parent company Trinity Health announced a vaccine mandate on July 8.

Ohio State said in an emailed statement that due to the resurgence of COVID-19, it’s adding the vaccine to its non-discretionary vaccine policy. Any employee who wishes not to get the vaccine will need an approved vaccine exemption.

“As health care providers, we know getting vaccinated is the best way to build immunity and to protect our patients, our colleagues, our families, and ourselves,” said Dr. Hal Paz, executive vice president and chancellor for Health Affairs at The Ohio State University and chief executive officer of the Ohio State Wexner Medical Center. “We’re proud that more than 72% of our over 27,000 employees have already chosen to be vaccinated against COVID-19.”

Nationwide Children's Hospital said it will require the vaccine since the majority of its patients are under the age of 12-years-old and unable to receive the vaccine.

"With the onset of the new, highly contagious delta variant and recent surges in COVID-19 cases across many of our communities, we must ensure that all our team members are protected and do our part in creating the safest environment possible for all those we serve," Nationwide Children's hospital said in an emailed statement.

On Tuesday, Ohio reported 1,756 new coronavirus cases and 124 hospitalizations. The state has seen a rise in new cases over the last 16 days.

Debbie Holmes has worked at WOSU News since 2009. She has hosted All Things Considered, since May 2021. Prior to that she was the host of Morning Edition and a reporter.
Michael Lee joined WOSU in 2021, but was previously an intern at the station in 2018. He is a graduate from Northwestern's Medill School of Journalism where he obtained his master's degree, and an alumnus of Ohio State University. Michael has previously worked as an intern at the Columbus Dispatch and most recently, the Chicago Sun-Times.