Massive Joint Statement Representing Millions of Medical Professionals Calls for Mandatory Vaccination for Healthcare Workers

UCLA ER doctor Medell Briggs-Malonson closes her eyes as she gets prepped for inoculation of the Covid-19 vaccine from nurse Eunice Lee at Ronald Reagan UCLA Medical Center in Westwood, California on December 16, 2020

ER Doctor Receives Covid-19 Vaccine From Nurse At UCLA Medical Center. (Brian van der Brug/AFP, Getty Images)

On Monday, a joint statement calling for “all health care and long-term care employers to require their employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19” was issued jointly by 57 separate medical groups representing millions of doctors, nurses, pharmacists, and many other medical professionals.

The Washington Post published the statement, which was signed by the the American Medical Association (AMA), the American Nurses Association (ANA), the American Academy of Pediatrics (AAP), the American Pharmacists Association (APhA), and 53 other medical professional groups and associations.

“Due to the recent COVID-19 surge and the availability of safe and effective vaccines, our health care organizations and societies advocate that all health care and long-term care employers require their workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine,” the joint statement begins. “This is the logical fulfillment of the ethical commitment of all health care workers to put patients as well as residents of long-term care facilities first and take all steps necessary to ensure their health and well-being.”

It references “highly contagious variants’ such as the Delta variant, as well as the high number of “unvaccinated people” in the country.

“Unfortunately, many health care and long-term care personnel remain unvaccinated. As we move towards full FDA approval of the currently available vaccines, all health care workers should get vaccinated for their own health, and to protect their colleagues, families, residents of long-term care facilities and patients,” it continues.

A WebMD/Medscape analysis concluded that “nationwide, 1 in 4 hospital workers who have direct contact with patients had not received a single dose of a COVID-19 vaccine by the end of May.” Those numbers are a month out of date, bu that rate of vaccination was a major factor in the release of the statement, which included endorsement from groups that have never previously advocated for mandatory vaccinations in the healthcare industry.

As the Washington Post article points out:

“We feel that it’s important to sign our name onto this,” said Rachel Villanueva, an OB/GYN and the president of the National Medical Association, which represents more than 50,000 Black physicians and is calling for a vaccination mandate for the first time.

Villanueva added that new coronavirus cases could disproportionately affect front-line workers — many of whom are African American — and communities of color that continue to lag behind Whites on vaccination rates. “We want to continue to dispel myths, educate, increase confidence and increase vaccination rates in our communities,” she said.

The statement stresses the ethical obligation and moral imperative for healthcare workers to lead. “The health and safety of U.S. workers, families, communities, and the nation depends on it,” they write.

Read the entire statement, and the list of signatories, in the below PDF.

Statement Medical Associations by Caleb Mediaite on Scribd

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