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Vaccinations mandated for health care workers; immunocompromised can receive 3rd dose

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Cuomo mandates vaccinations for healthcare workers, third dose for immunocompromised(Photo: CNYCentral)

On Monday, Gov. Andrew Cuomo announced that all health care workers in New York will need to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Sept. 27.

Numbers released by the Department of Health state that 75% of the state's hospital workers, 74% of the adult care facility workers, and 68% of the state's nursing home workers have completed their vaccination.

Back on July 28, Cuomo announced that state employees and patient-facing employees in state-run hospitals will be required to get vaccinated for COVID-19 by Labor Day.

State employees who choose to remain unvaccinated will be required to undergo weekly COVID testing.

Cuomo also announced that the Department of Health has authorized a third COVID-19 vaccine dose for New Yorkers with compromised immune systems. This follows the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's recommendation last week.

The CDC is currently recommending that moderately to severely immunocompromised people receive an additional dose, including people who have:

  • Been receiving active cancer treatment for tumors or cancers of the blood;
  • Received an organ transplant and are taking medications to suppress the immune system;
  • Received a stem cell transplant within the last 2 years or are taking medicine to suppress the immune system;
  • Moderate or severe primary immunodeficiency (such as DiGeorge syndrome, Wiskott-Aldrich syndrome);
  • Advanced or untreated HIV infection;
  • Active treatment with high-dose corticosteroids, cancer chemotherapy that causes sever immunosuppression, or other medications that may suppress your immune response.

Eligible New Yorkers can receive their third dose 28 days after the completion of their two-dose vaccine series, effective immediately, according to the Department of Heath.

"When COVID ambushed New York last year, New Yorkers acted, while the Federal Government denied the problem," Governor Cuomo said. "Now, the Delta variant is spreading across the nation and across New York -- new daily positives are up over 1000% over the last six weeks, and over 80 percent of recent positives in New York State are linked to the Delta variant. We must now act again to stop the spread. Our health care heroes led the battle against the virus, and now we need them to lead the battle between the variant and the vaccine. We have always followed the science, and we're doing so again today, with these recommendations by Dr. Zucker and federal and state health experts. But we need to do more. I have strongly urged private businesses to implement vaccinated-only admission policies, and school districts to mandate vaccinations for teachers. Neither will occur without the state legally mandating the actions -- private businesses will not enforce a vaccine mandate unless it's the law, and local school districts will be hesitant to make these challenging decisions without legal direction."