All workers at all Our Lady Health System hospitals - including Our Lady of Lourdes in Lafayette - will be required to get the vaccine, the system announced today.
The Franciscan Missionaries of Our Lady Health System announced to its organization it will require the Covid-19 vaccine for all team members, employed providers, residents, students in clinical rotations, contract staff, and volunteers.
Implementation of the requirement will occur over several months concluding December, 2021.
There are deadlines for two groups. The Leaders group includes physicians, all managers, APPs and residents. Members of that group must be vaccinated by October 31 or be placed on unpaid suspension. If they're not vaccinated by November 30, they'll be terminated. The staff group includes everyone else, and must be vaccinated by November 30 or be placed on unpaid suspension. If they're still not vaccinated by December 31, they'll be terminated.
"We have listened to our team members and physicians as well as tracked the rapid progress of this fourth surge to reach this decision. Throughout the pandemic, our teams have risen to the calling to care for those who need them. We continue that now but already we are straining to meet the demand. It is predicted that we have several weeks and possibly months before we reach the peak of this surge. We must act now to protect each other from spreading the delta variant and protect vulnerable patients from exposure. Vaccines are the best means of accomplishing this and more important than ever as the lasting step to end this pandemic. We should not wait any longer. Our health system is not alone in its decision to require a vaccine and joins many other healthcare organizations and expect others to follow. As a healthcare leader we believe we must take this step now for everyone’s safety and long-term community well-being," says a statement from Richard R. Vath, M.D., President and CEO.
"There’s never been a more important time to demonstrate, by example, our responsibility to one another and all those we serve."
The system includes St. Francis Medical Center in Monroe, Our Lady of the Lake in Baton Rouge, Our Lady of Lourdes in Acadiana, Our Lady of the Angels in Bogalusa and St. Dominic Hospital in Jackson, Mississippi.