Ten states are suing Biden administration over COVID-19 vaccine mandate for US health workers – Community News

Ten states are suing Biden administration over COVID-19 vaccine mandate for US health workers

WASHINGTON, Nov. 10 (Reuters) – Ten Republican attorneys general filed a lawsuit Wednesday to stop the Biden administration’s demand that millions of U.S. health workers be vaccinated against the coronavirus, saying it would exacerbate the staff shortage.

President Joe Biden, a Democrat, said last Thursday that he will maintain the mandate from January 4.

The attorneys general of Missouri, Nebraska, Arkansas, Kansas, Iowa, Wyoming, Alaska, South Dakota, North Dakota and New Hampshire have jointly filed a lawsuit in the US District Court for the Eastern District of Missouri in St. Louis.

“Putting this additional mandate on healthcare facilities and workers will exacerbate this problem and will likely cause some facilities — particularly those in deprived, rural areas — to close due to the inability to hire sufficient staff,” the attorney general said. Derek Schmidt of Kansas in a statement. .

The lawsuit said the federal mandate infringed on states’ police powers and is illegal under the Administrative Procedure Act because there was no comment period before its release.

On Nov. 4, the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS), the regulator for the two federal health programs, issued a preliminary final rule it says covers more than 10 million people and applies to approximately 76,000 healthcare providers, including hospitals, nursing homes , and dialysis centers.

An interim closing rule is effective immediately without the standard response time following publication. However, there is a 60-day response time after publication.

Providers who fail to adhere to the mandate could lose access to Medicare and Medicaid funds. Medicare serves people 65 and older and the disabled. Medicaid serves the poor.

The lawsuit said the CMS rule was heavy-handed and failed to take into account local factors and circumstances.

CMS has said there have been no widespread layoffs among healthcare providers that have already mandated vaccines, including 41% of US hospitals, and that applying the mandate to all healthcare facilities will prevent staff from leaving one facility to get a ​to look for a job in another.

“With many employers already mandating vaccination, and with almost all local (and distant) healthcare employers demanding vaccination under this rule, we expect such impacts to be minimized,” the agency said in introducing the policy. the rule.

Reporting by Ahmed Aboulenein; edit by Grant McCool

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