Cody Regional Health: We Must Comply with Vaccine Mandate

Cody Regional Health: We Must Comply with Vaccine Mandate

Written by on November 10, 2021

Cody Regional Health speaks out on the looming vaccine mandate: if the hospital wants to keep 70% of its income, they have to comply and make their own mandate.

On Tuesday, Nov. 9, Cody Regional Health released a statement on the federal vaccine mandate which is requiring healthcare providers to be fully vaccinated by January 2022. The full statement is published below.

Cody Regional Health (CRH) is responding to the November 4 CMS Omnibus COVID-19 Health Care Staff Vaccination Interim Final Rule.  Last Thursday, The Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) issued a mandate requiring healthcare employees to receive a COVID-19 vaccine.  The rule mandates all eligible staff at healthcare facilities who participate in Medicare and Medicaid programs to be fully vaccinated by January 4, 2022.

“The impact to Cody Regional Health if we do not comply means being disqualified from participation in the Medicare and Medicaid programs which account for nearly 70% of the hospital’s reimbursement.  CRH could not sustain our current services or operate without Medicare and Medicaid reimbursement”, said Doug McMillan, Cody Regional Health CEO.

According to a CMS press release dated November 4, 2021, “The prevalence of COVID-19, in particular, the Delta variant, within health care settings increases the risk of unvaccinated staff contracting the virus and transmitting the virus to patients. When health care staff cannot work because of illness or exposure to COVID-19, the strain on the health care system becomes more severe and further limits patient access to safe and essential care.  These requirements will apply to approximately 76,000 providers and cover over 17 million health care workers across the country. The regulation will create a consistent standard within Medicare and Medicaid while giving patients assurance of the vaccination status of those delivering care.”

The CMS press release continued stating that, “Facilities covered by this regulation must establish a policy ensuring all eligible staff have received the first dose of a two-dose COVID-19 vaccine or a one-dose COVID-19 vaccine prior to providing any care, treatment or other services by December 5, 2021.”  CRH is actively drafting processes and policies to ensure compliance with this mandate, which includes exemptions for staff with recognized medical conditions or sincerely held religious beliefs, observances, or practices.  CRH will establish a process for staff to request either exemption and ensure that the requests are appropriately documented and evaluated per the federal guidelines offered in this regard.

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