A growing number of employers across a wide array of industries in the U.S. are issuing COVID-19 vaccine mandates, and early evidence shows they are quickly increasing inoculation rates among workers.
“Vaccine mandates are proving to work,” Dr. Steven McDonald, an emergency medicine physician in New York City told Yahoo Finance Live.
“Many people are hesitant, and we’re seeing that no amount of coaxing from the medical community and friends and family is working. It’s the mandate that’s nudging people over that line,” he said.
In New York, 92% of the states’s more than 625,000 hospital and nursing home workers are now vaccinated against COVID-19 after a mandate resulted in a 10% jump in the vaccination rate in just one week among those workers.
Still, some skeptical health care workers are choosing dismissal over vaccination. New York State’s largest health care provider, Northwell, fired 1,400 employees or 2% of its workforce this week, for refusing to get the shot.
United Airlines (UAL), which became the first major carrier to require the vaccine, announced last week that 99.5% of its workforce got at least one jab.
When Tyson Foods (TSN) announced a mandate in early August, less than 50% of its employees had been vaccinated. Now, that number has climbed above 90%, with three weeks to go before the Nov. 1 deadline.
On Wednesday, leaders in Los Angeles approved one of the nation’s strictest vaccine mandates. Beginning Nov. 4, patrons and workers at bars, restaurants, nail salons, gyms, even at Lakers games, must show proof of vaccination.
The L.A. Lakers’ general manager Rob Pelinka said his team will be fully vaccinated by opening night against the Golden State Warriors on Oct. 19.
Even NBA star Andrew Wiggins, who refused to get vaccinated after his application for a religious exemption was denied by the league, has gotten the shot.
Last month, Dr. Anthony Fauci, director of the National Institute of Allergy and Infectious Diseases, said it could take “many, many” more vaccine mandates to get the pandemic under control.
“We’re seeing real success stories,” McDonald said. “It’s an incredible win for vaccines.”
Alexis Christoforous is an anchor at Yahoo Finance. Follow her on Twitter @AlexisTVNews.
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