Front line Health care workers required proof of vaccination at work

Premier Scott Moe and Chief Medical Health Officer Saqib Shahab provided an update on the COVID-19 situation in the province today.

Front line Healthcare workers in Saskatchewan will now be required a proof of vaccination when entering the workplace. If the health care workers refuse the vaccination, they will be required to take regular testing. The Ministry of Health and the Saskatchewan Health Authority are working with the public health sector representation to establish the policy. Moe says the move to require proof of vaccination or consistent COVID-19 testing for health workers is done for the not only the safety of the front line health care workers, but for the people who come into contact with them including patients, long term residents and family members. The premier also noted that the rising hospitalization numbers was also a deciding factor to go ahead with the proof of vaccination for the health care workers.

Moe and Dr. Shahab also discussed the proof of vaccination that may be required at larger events. The Saskatchewan Roughriders announced on Monday, that proof of vaccinations will be required to enter Mosaic Stadium for the final three home games of the season for the Roughriders beginning September 18.

Moe says they will be working with any organization that will be looking into enforcing a proof of vaccination policy but added that larger events are more equipped to handle checking the proof of vaccination. Moe said other sector of  businesses like retail and restaurants aren’t able to handle vaccination proof process at this time.  “Quite frankly they’re having challenges finding enough staff to get up 100% operational. I just don’t think there’s room or staff available, for instance in the retail sector to move forward to have people that checking for proof of vaccination prior to entry into various restaurants and retail locations that we have.”

Even though there was no mandate for mandatory vaccines, Moe believes with the vaccine passports at events like Saskatchewan Roughrider games, life will become difficult and more uncomfortable for those who choose not to be vaccinated.

The premier says that they will work collaboratively with any organization that is looking to implement a proof of vaccination or proof of negative policies. He added that while he supports organizations that are looking into these policies into place, that is a decision that must be made by the employer.

The province also announced that they will be offering booster immunizations to those who are eligible beginning September 7. These include residents of long term and personal care homes, transplant recipients, recipients of stable, active treatment for malignant hematologic disorders and recipients of an anti-CD20 agent. Booster doses will be administered at least eight weeks following receipt of the second mRNA dose (Pfizer or Moderna)

The leader of the Opposition, the NDP’s leader Ryan Meili responded saying while he’s happy with the announcement of booster shots he adds that today news did nothing to contain the 4th wave of the pandemic in the province. He commented in a statement, that the government didn’t provide a plan that doesn’t emphasize testing, tracing and enforceable self-isolation for positive COVID-19 cases, vaccine mandates for all large public events, and a plan for full vaccination of school and health care staff and appropriate indoor mask mandates.

 

 

 

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