Rural Hospitals Loose Only Some Staffs

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In a previous post, it was noted that most rural hospitals were facing staff shortages due to Covid fatigue, vaccine mandates and other lucrative job opportunities (eg. traveling staffs).

However, after interviewing more than two dozens hospital officials Politico magazine writes that hospital lost only a small fraction of staff due to federal vaccine requirement.

“Nearly two dozen rural hospital officials and state hospital association leaders told Politico they have lost just a fraction of their staff to the federal immunization requirement, which mandated that health care workers in every state except Texas received at least one shot of the vaccine by last week.”

There was certainly a worst-case scenario that was, quite frankly, scary, and I’m just glad that didn’t come to pass. I was pleasantly surprised.

– Brian Tabor, president of the Indiana Hospital Association (source: Politico)

Steve Todd, CEO of St. Luke Community Healthcare in Ronan, Mont., told Politico that they lost only three employees. “I’m a little bit relieved that we didn’t have a more dire situation. There was a lot of saber-rattling by staff … I’m pleased that they stepped up,” told Todd.

According to the Politico, rural hospitals executives expressed that “all hospitals should be held to the same standard and that waiving the vaccine mandate for rural hospitals would have done more harm than good”.

According to Mason General Hospital’s Chief Medical Officer Dean Gushee, his employees were getting lot of misinformation referring to one his employees. “I spent a good hour with her, talking it through and answering the questions, and at the very end of it, she said that she would get the shot as long as I gave it to her, which was the riskiest part of the whole thing since I’m a doctor — I don’t give shots. Anyway, she survived to tell the tale, kept her job, and didn’t have to get an exemption,” said Gushee to Politico.

“The doomsday predictions from some Republican governors and lawmakers, who warned the mandate would lead to a workforce crisis and limit care, particularly in rural areas, have not been borne out,” writes the Politico.

Coronavirus-19 vaccination watch

According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) COVID vaccination tracker page (as of February 23, 9 a.m.) 687,728,405 doses have been distributed and 551,389,710 doses administered. According MDH COVID-19 Response vaccine data (as of Feb 21) a total of 9,369,223 doses of Covid-19 (Pfizer & Moderna) vaccines have been administered in Minnesota. According to the MDH latest tally (as of February 23) the confirmed COVID-19 cases in Minnesota are 1,410,583 (out of 18,672,599 tested) with 12,019 deaths.