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California Joins New Mexico In Requiring Booster Shots For Healthcare Workers
California Governor Gavin Newsom introduces new state efforts and proposed investments to fight and prevent crime across the state... DUBLIN, CA - DECEMBER 17: California Governor Gavin Newsom introduces new state efforts and proposed investments to fight and prevent crime across the state during a news conference in Dublin, Calif., on Friday, Dec. 17, 2021. Newsom was joined by Attorney General Rob Bonta, and other law enforcement leaders. (Photo by Ray Chavez/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images) MediaNews Group/The Mercury News via Getty Images / Contributor
Ray Chavez/MediaNews Group/The Mercury News/Contributor via Getty Images

As information continues to spread about the new Omicron variant, some states are beginning to require booster shots of the COVID-19 vaccine for healthcare workers. 

On Tuesday, Democratic Governor Gavin Newsom announced that California will be making its healthcare workers get additional shots of the COVID-19 vaccine.

In an evening tweet, Newsom wrote, “BREAKING: California will require healthcare workers to get their booster.”

“With Omicron on the rise, we’re taking immediate actions to protect Californians and ensure our hospitals are prepared. More to come in our official announcement tomorrow.”

In a video, Newsom said he would be giving a press conference regarding the announcement on Wednesday, which was stated by his office, as well.

Local Central California outlet ABC 30 reported, “Federal health officials said the variant accounted for 73% of new cases last week.”

Earlier this month, New Mexico put forward a similar edict. 

A December 2nd press release noted, “[a]n amended emergency public health order issued Thursday by the state of New Mexico will effectively require many workers to receive a booster shot when eligible to protect against the ongoing spread of COVID-19.”

The announcement pointed to the new Omicron variant that caused worry around the world. Many experts say the variant, while highly transmissible, may be less severe than prior variants of the virus.

As The Daily Wire reported, the first death attributed to Omicron took place on Monday in Harris County, Texas. “Fox News reported that the Omicron variant comprised the vast majority of new infections last week,” it noted. 

New Mexico’s announcement in early December pointed to guidance from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), adding, “[a]lthough experts caution that much remains unknown about the new variant, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention this week amplified its recommendation on COVID-19 booster shots, saying all vaccinated adults ‘should’ receive one either six months after completing a Pfizer or Moderna series and two months after a Johnson & Johnson shot.”

It then quoted CDC Director Dr. Rochelle Walensky, who said, “The recent emergence of the Omicron variant further emphasizes the importance of vaccination, boosters and prevention efforts needed to protect against COVID-19.”

Walensky added, “Early data from South Africa suggest increased transmissibility of the Omicron variant, and scientists in the United States and around the world are urgently examining vaccine effectiveness related to this variant. I strongly encourage the 47 million adults who are not yet vaccinated to get vaccinated as soon as possible and to vaccinate the children and teens in their families as well because strong immunity will likely prevent serious illness.”

The directive stated: 

New Mexico’s state public health policies have for months required that many workers in higher-risk environments – including workers in all health care and congregate-care settings – be vaccinated. Public school workers and state employees, meanwhile, must submit to weekly COVID-19 testing if they are not vaccinated.

The amended state public health order, issued Thursday by Acting Health Secretary David R. Scrase, M.D., will require those categories of workers to receive a booster shot.

Those workers need to get a booster shot no later than January 17th of next year, or within four weeks of being qualified. 

“Staffed hospital beds remain in dangerously short supply in New Mexico. Crisis standards of care have been implemented in several New Mexico hospitals, meaning they may be forced to ration care,” the order added.

The Daily Wire previously reported that some hospital systems have walked back their COVID-19 staff vaccine mandates due to recent court decisions.

As The Wall Street Journal reported, hospital groups including HCA Healthcare Inc., Tenet Healthcare Corp., and nonprofits such as AdventHealth and the Cleveland Clinic are getting rid of their mandates.

According to hospital leaders, public health officials, and nursing organizations, vaccine mandates have contributed to restricting the number of healthcare employees. The outlet also noted that the price of labor has risen, and hospitals have found it difficult to keep workers at all levels as hospitalizations increased. 

The Journal noted, “More recently, thousands of nurses have left the industry or lost their jobs rather than get vaccinated. As of September, 30% of workers at more than 2,000 hospitals across the country surveyed by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention were unvaccinated.” 

After courts stopped the federal order, HCA halted its mandate. Tenet and AdventHealth also stated they wouldn’t require workers get vaccinated after the court took action. “Workers in states that mandate vaccination must comply with local laws, HCA and Tenet said,” The Journal added. 

Last week, a federal appeals court out of New Orleans effectively restored the Biden administration’s vaccine mandate for healthcare workers in 26 states across the country after it had been previously blocked by a federal judge in Louisiana. The Biden administration then asked the Supreme Court to get involved in the issue.

The Daily Wire is fighting Joe Biden’s vaccine mandate in federal court. Join us in this fight by signing our petition to OSHA, telling them that you will not comply with this mandate.

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