St. Luke’s requiring COVID-19 vaccinations for employees

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St. Luke’s says all employees, vendors, volunteers and board members will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

The company sent a release Wednesday evening, say first doses are required by Wednesday, September 1 and and have completed the vaccine series by Friday, October 1.

Those who are currently unvaccinated and those who eventually qualify for exemptions will be required to take COVID-19 tests regularly.

"We understand people have strong beliefs about this," Dr. Nick Van Deelen, St. Luke’s Co-President/CEO and CMO said. "Ultimately, the policy is about keeping our patients and staff safe and reducing the community transmission of a serious disease."

To date, St. Luke’s says 78% of their employees and 97% of their physicians have received their COVID-19 vaccine.

The company says they been closely monitoring the developing data related to the COVID-19 Delta variant. St. Luke’s says they arrived at this decision due to the highly contagious nature of this new variant, coupled with the significant benefits the vaccine has shown in the reduction of COVID-19 infections, severe illness, hospitalizations and death.