The Mayo Clinic in Minnesota fired 700 unvaccinated health care workers on Tuesday, despite nurses at the clinic issuing a warning several weeks ago about staffing issues.
“While Mayo Clinic is saddened to lose valuable employees, we need to take all steps necessary to keep our patients, workforce, visitors, and communities safe,” the Mayo Clinic said in a statement Tuesday in confirming the mass firings. “If individuals released from employment choose to get vaccinated at a later date, the opportunity exists for them to apply and return to Mayo Clinic for future job openings.”
The employees had until Monday to get the COVID-19 vaccine. Officials said the 700 workers who were terminated represent approximately 1 percent of the Mayo Clinic’s 70,000 employees.
“While final numbers are still not available, nearly 99 percent of staff across all Mayo Clinic locations have complied with the required vaccination program, meaning they have been vaccinated or have received medical or religious exemptions,” said the Clinic in its statement.
Outside of Minnesota, the Mayo Clinic operates hospitals in Wisconsin, Arizona, Florida, and Iowa. The Mayo Clinic is the largest employer in Minnesota.
“Based on science and data, it’s clear that vaccination keeps people out of the hospital and saves lives. That’s true for everyone in our communities—and it’s especially true for the many patients with serious or complex diseases who seek care at Mayo Clinic each day,” added the Mayo Clinic, without noting that studies and data suggest the COVID-19 Omicron variant appears to easily infect fully vaccinated individuals.
Some longtime Mayo Clinic employees who were fired for not receiving the vaccine told Twincities.com that they wouldn’t comment on the firings because they fear “community retaliation against either themselves or their families.”
Several months ago, President Joe Biden announced that health care facilities that receive Medicaid and Medicare funding would have to impose a vaccine mandate for all their employees or risk losing federal funding. About a week ago, the Centers for Medicaid & Medicare Services reversed its policy and announced it would begin enforcing the vaccine mandate in about half of all U.S. states, including Minnesota.
The agency, in a memorandum, said it modified the compliance dates for its mandates, meaning that facilities that apply have to comply with the mandate’s first phase. All health care staff needs to have obtained the first dose of the Pfizer or Moderna vaccine, or the single-shot Johnson & Johnson vaccine by Jan. 27, 2022—or 30 days after the CMS memorandum was issued.
In mid-December, nurses represented by the Minnesota Nurses Association held a press conference to call on hospital CEOs to address staffing concerns.
“To our patients, I want to say this: Nurses will be here when you need us,” Mary C. Turner, union president and a COVID-19 intensive care unit nurse, said at the news conference on Dec. 20. “To our hospital CEOs and elected officials, please hear us: Nurses need more than words, we need action to address the crisis of staffing and retention in Minnesota hospitals.”
COVID-19 is the illness caused by the CCP (Chinese Communist Party) virus.
The Epoch Times has contacted the Mayo Clinic and the Minnesota Nurses Association for comment.