Hospitals react to block of vaccine mandate for healthcare workers

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FORT WAYNE, Ind. (WANE) – On Tuesday, a Louisiana federal judge issued a preliminary injunction to block the federal vaccine mandate for healthcare workers nationally.

Judge Terry A. Doughty in the U.S. District Court Western District of Louisiana issued a separate injunction from the federal court order in Missouri that applied to only 10 states.

Indiana Attorney General Todd Rokita’s office confirmed that Tuesday’s ruling did stop vaccine requirements for health care workers nationwide, with the exception of Alaska, Iowa, Arkansas, Kansas, Nebraska, Missouri, New Hampshire, Wyoming, North Dakota, and South Dakota, since those states are already under a preliminary injunction.

WANE 15 reached out to local hospitals for their reactions.

Parkview Health confirmed they were aware of the block but did not elaborate on how or if it changes anything for their workers.

Lutheran Health Network sent this statement:

We are aware of the preliminary injunction regarding the Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services’ (CMS) vaccination requirement for healthcare workers nationwide. Lutheran Health Network continues to strongly encourage vaccination since it offers the most protection from COVID-19 and emerging new variants. The majority of our caregivers have already chosen to be vaccinated and more are choosing to be vaccinated now. We remain committed to maintaining a safe environment for our patients and caregivers, which includes following CDC guidelines for masking of all providers, patients and visitors and routine testing for any unvaccinated staff members.
Like much of the country, Lutheran Health Network hospitals are seeing an increase in admissions of COVID-positive patients. We currently have capacity in both medical and critical units and can provide care to anyone needing medical attention. It is a day-to-day situation, and we monitor our capacity closely. 
I would direct you to IDOH’s District 3 hospitalizations information for historic data on COVID admissions since that will be more representative of the whole community. https://www.coronavirus.in.gov/2393.htm

Lutheran Health Network

Allen County’s health Commissioner Dr. Matthew Sutter said he avoids the legal aspect of the injunction but he trusts the mandates will work themselves out through the courts.

“From my perspective getting more people vaccinated is better than having fewer people vaccinated. We know that these vaccines are safe and and effective and they allow people to not quarantine if they have high risk exposures,” Dr. Sutter said. “Having people together vaccinated is more efficient than having them together masked.”

Indiana is one of the fourteen states that sued the federal government over the mandate.

According to www.beckershospitalreview.com, Indiana ranks 41st among states with 50.58% of the population fully vaccinated.

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