New York Hospital to Pause Deliveries Due to Number of Vaccine Mandate Waivers

September 14, 2021 by archyde
New York Hospital suspends deliveries 0:46

(CNN) — A hospital in upstate New York is “pausing” baby deliveries due to the number of resignations by employees of the maternity unit over the state’s Covid-19 vaccination requirements, health officials said.

Lewis County General Hospital in Lowville, about 90 kilometers northeast of Syracuse, will stop deliveries after Sept. 24, said Gerald Cayer, executive director of the Lewis County Health System.

“We cannot have secure staff for service after September 24. The number of waivers received leaves us no choice but to stop the delivery of babies at Lewis County General Hospital. I hope the Health Department will work with us. in support of pausing the service instead of closing the maternity department, “Cayer said at a news conference on Friday.

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Since former New York Governor Andrew Cuomo announced that all hospital and long-term care facility employees must have at least one dose of the covid-19 vaccine by September 27, 30 hospital system employees, 21 of whom worked in clinical areas, resigned, Cayer said.

Six of the resignations were from the hospital’s maternity unit.

Cayer said there are 165 employees throughout the Lewis County health system who have not received a single dose of the vaccine.

“Our vaccination rate is now 73% —464 people in the health system — are now vaccinated,” Cayer said. “165 employees are not vaccinated yet. And it is not clear if they will,” Cayer said.

“We have two weeks left for 165 staff members to receive the first dose of the vaccine. And at the same time, we must develop contingency plans for services that we believe are at risk. We cannot wait until the last minute. We have not been given a lot of time, and we have a difficult deadline. “

Cayer said several other departments were at risk “based on the number of unvaccinated people in those departments.”

New York Hospital to Pause Deliveries Due to Number of Vaccine Mandate Waivers

Lewis County Health System Executive Director Gerald Cayer says that about a quarter of his employees have not received the Covid-19 vaccine.

Mandatory vaccination mandate

Contingency plans include the reassignment of nurses from administrative roles to their clinical functions, he said.

When asked what it would take to keep the maternity ward running, Cayer said: “Our hope is that as we get closer, the number of people vaccinated will increase, fewer people will leave, and perhaps with a little luckily some of those who have resigned will reconsider. “

Employees who resign or are fired due to vaccination status will not be eligible for unemployment benefits, he said.

Cayer said the hospital staff shortage was a pre-coronavirus pandemic problem and now wanted to focus on recruiting.

New York Hospital to Pause Deliveries Due to Number of Vaccine Mandate Waivers

New York Hospital to Pause Deliveries Due to Number of Vaccine Mandate Waivers

“If we can stop the service and now focus on recruiting nurses who are vaccinated, we can once again be involved in delivering babies here in Lewis County,” Cayer said.

Cayer said he supports the mandate for healthcare workers and others.

“The mandate ensures that we will have a healthy workforce and that we are not responsible for transmission inside or outside our facilities,” he said.

“The covid-19 positivity trend line over the past two weeks is moving in the wrong direction and putting our community at risk. Lewis County has the highest 7-day and 14-day positivity rate in the state of New York over the last three days, “he said on Friday.

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“Today, this is how covid-19 transmission is impacting the healthcare system. The Lewis County Health System has five quarantined employees, five employees in isolation, and there are four community members hospitalized at LCGH who they are positive for covid and sick enough to be hospitalized. “

The New York State Department of Health issued an order on August 16 directing the vaccination of all health care workers, including staff in “nursing homes, adult care, and other group care settings,” prior to the September 27th.

Cuomo had previously announced that all healthcare workers treating patients in state hospitals must be vaccinated without testing options.

On Thursday, US President Joe Biden announced that he would require that the 17 million healthcare workers in facilities that receive Medicare and Medicaid funds be fully vaccinated, expanding the mandate to hospitals, home care facilities and health centers. of dialysis across the country.

– CNN’s Kelly Christ, Artemis Moshtaghian and Susannah Cullinane contributed to this report.

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Natasha Kumar

By Natasha Kumar

Natasha Kumar has been a reporter on the news desk since 2018. Before that she wrote about young adolescence and family dynamics for Styles and was the legal affairs correspondent for the Metro desk. Before joining The Times Hub, Natasha Kumar worked as a staff writer at the Village Voice and a freelancer for Newsday, The Wall Street Journal, GQ and Mirabella. To get in touch, contact me through my