Health care workers in Maine are required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 1, Gov. Janet Mills’ administration said Thursday.
An emergency rule requiring the vaccine applies to any individual employed by a hospital, multi-level health care facility, home health agency, nursing facility, residential care facility or intermediate care facility for individuals with intellectual disabilities.
The vaccination rule also covers those employed by emergency medical service organizations or dental practices.
“Maine’s hospitals, clinics, nursing facilities and other health providers are on the front lines of the fight against COVID-19,” said Jeanne Lambrew, commissioner of the Maine Department of Health and Human Services.
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Lambrew thanked those employees who have already been vaccinated, adding, “with the arrival of the delta variant in Maine, it is more important than ever to protect these workers through vaccination.”
Health care providers such as the Maine Hospital Association, Maine Medical Association, Maine Primary Care Association and Maine Health Care Association supported the announcement, along with the state’s two largest health systems, MaineHealth and Northern Light Health.
On Monday, Mills announced that 80% of adults in Maine have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine.