The Colorado State Board of Well being permitted a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare staff throughout the state on Monday in a 6-1 vote.
A particular assembly was held on Zoom for over two hours which concerned the members discussing the main points of the mandate and taking public enter. The decision had a 1,000 individual capability restrict, which was hit simply minutes into the assembly.
The assembly was held to contemplate implementing emergency guidelines requiring licensed healthcare services to mandate that their personnel – together with workers, direct contractors and assist workers who work together with individuals searching for medical care – obtain a COVID-19 vaccine.
Gov. Jared Polis despatched a letter to the board simply weeks in the past asking the members to implement a vaccination requirement.
The board did approve the requirement for the 120 days through which emergency guidelines are sometimes set. Nevertheless, the difficulty will seem once more on Oct. 21 for a everlasting rulemaking.
The rule doesn’t apply to particular person practitioners, moderately licensed and authorized services regulated by the Colorado Division of Public Well being and Surroundings (CDPHE). Medical and spiritual exemptions are each lined, and services will be capable to decide what particularly qualifies as a non secular exemption. The division is not going to have involvement in granting particular person exemptions.
“Not solely is our mandate to guard the well being of individuals in Colorado, however our mandate can be to observe the proof of science, and I’m fairly disturbed in regards to the new variant that is simply popping out from South Africa,” mentioned Patricia Hammon, the board’s president. “I am additionally very involved with the quantity of misinformation … I’d simply ask everybody to be actually cautious in regards to the info that you simply imagine.”
Dozens of residents spoke throughout the time allotted for public feedback, some expressing assist for the mandate and others questioning the info and efficacy.
“Many people in healthcare, myself included, have labored by way of the whole thing of the pandemic holding fingers of sick sufferers, and many people have already acquired pure immunity. Why is pure immunity being left fully out of the equation?” requested Lorissa ArgoRay, a registered nurse who spoke within the digital assembly whereas standing outdoors the well being constructing at a protest.
The brand new measure will imply workers at about 3,800 licensed healthcare services throughout the state will now must have their first vaccine dose by Sept. 30 and be totally vaccinated by Oct. 31.
The choice comes as Polis acknowledged on Tuesday that 75% of grownup Coloradans have been vaccinated with at the least one dose of a vaccine.