Assemblyman John Mikulin (R, C, I-Bethpage) is calling on Gov. Kathy Hochul and state Department of Health Commissioner Howard Zucker to amend directives that require all healthcare workers to get vaccinated for COVID-19 by Sept. 27 or face layoffs. Mikulin encourages everyone eligible for a vaccine to get vaccinated, but also believes that this mandate will create significant staffing shortages that will compromise the healthcare industry.
“We want everyone to get vaccinated that can, but there are instances where that can’t happen – especially when you are up against the clock. For the better part of two years the men and women in our healthcare industry have worked night and day and made great personal sacrifices to keep our healthcare industry going, and we are still in the midst of the pandemic’s Delta variant,” said Mikulin. “We need all hands on deck and cannot afford to lose these highly skilled, trained and dedicated professionals – or to further add to the state’s unemployment burden.”
Mikulin said he would support alternatives to mandated vaccination, such as what the state has allowed in schools whereby teachers and administrators are allowed to opt out by choosing to get tested weekly and wear masks.
“These healthcare workers sacrificed their own health and isolated themselves from their loved ones for months for the greater good,” said Mikulin. “The state owes them an immense debt of gratitude, not a pink slip. There has to be a solution, and I encourage our governor to find it quickly in order to ensure healthcare services, particularly those at hospitals and nursing homes, are not compromised in any way.”