The Rundown

Columbus Public Health Department is requiring COVID-19 vaccines for employees

By: - September 8, 2021 12:30 am

The city of Columbus Public Health Department. Photo from Google Maps.

The city of Columbus’ public health department will require COVID-19 vaccination for all of its employees, the agency announced in a release Tuesday.

Following the Food and Drug Administration’s full approval of the Pfizer COVID-19 vaccine, Columbus Public Health will join all four central Ohio hospital systems and many other local and national employers in requiring the COVID-19 vaccine for all of its employees, many of whom are frontline health care workers, the release said.

“As the delta variant continues to surge and we prepare to administer booster vaccines in our community, this vaccine requirement will help protect our workforce and the people we serve from COVID-19 which is spreading like wildfire here and across the country,” said Health Commissioner Dr. Mysheika Roberts.

Columbus Public Health will require all of its employees to be vaccinated by Nov. 1, with any of the three available COVID-19 vaccines, provide proof of COVID-19 vaccination, or provide an exemption due to medical reasons or sincerely held religious beliefs, practices or observances, the release said.

The agency noted that a vaccine requirement is not new for Columbus Public Health, which already requires other vaccines for staff to protect them and the public it serves, though the release did not list them.

“COVID-19 vaccination provides the strongest protection against employees becoming severely ill from COVID-19 and helps prevent them from spreading it to clients, patients, peers, or the general public,” the release said.

Commissioner Roberts said that more than 374 million doses of vaccines have been given safely in the U.S., and full FDA approval of the Pfizer vaccine gives the department even more confidence in the safety and effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccine.

“The vaccine remains the best tool we have for protecting health and preventing serious illness and hospitalization from this highly contagious virus. As public health workers, we must help lead the way,” Dr. Roberts added.

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