Nearly 6,000 Greek Hospital Workers Suspended for Not Getting Vaccine

Health workers and ambulances staff protest with banners against mandatory Covid vaccines

The Greek Ministry of Health has revealed that 5,895 suspensions have been handed out to hospital workers who are either not fully vaccinated or declined the coronavirus vaccine.

The total number of suspensions include those issued and those in the process of being issued, as Greece now requires all healthcare workers to have at least one vaccine shot, despite appeals from healthcare workers to reject the mandatory vaccine.

“Vaccination is imposed for reasons of protection of public health from the spread of the coronavirus to the hospitalised who are a particularly vulnerable group,” the Greek Council of State said after rejecting the healthcare worker’s appeal, Proto Thema reports.

On Thursday, the Greek government announced it would be giving healthcare workers who had been suspended a second chance to get the first shot of the coronavirus vaccine.

Greek Health Minister Thanos Plevris said: “Mandatory vaccination for the workers of the NHS (National Health System) was legislated to help to safeguard public health.”

“Since we do not intend to punish [people], we will introduce an amendment,” Plevris added.

The amendment will allow healthcare workers to return to work if they take the first vaccine dose in the coming days.

Meanwhile, on Thursday, hundreds of healthcare workers staged a five-hour protest in Athens and other Greek cities.

According to a labour union official, as many as 10,000 hospital workers could face suspension for not taking the vaccine, which could impact the ability of hospitals to keep up with incoming patients and give adequate, timely treatment.

Mandatory vaccinations for healthcare workers have also been proposed and rolled out in other European countries, such as France, where some healthcare workers also expressed hesitancy.

Last month, the House of Lords peer Claire Fox, Baroness Fox of Buckley, warned that vaccine mandates in the United Kingdom could cause serious damage to employment rights there, too.

“When it comes to people’s employment rights and their jobs, the idea that you would be told that this… very efficient vaccine is going to be forced on you with the threat of your job seems to me to undermine any of the positive ways one can argue for taking the vaccine and actually, has a serious, damaging effect on people’s employment rights,” Baroness Fox said.

Follow Chris Tomlinson on Twitter at @TomlinsonCJ or email at ctomlinson(at)


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