Maryland is implementing vaccine protocols for state employees working in congregate settings, requiring them to show proof of vaccination or wear a mask and submit to regular government testing for the Chinese coronavirus.
“Effective September 1, employees in 48 state facilities will be required to show proof of vaccination, or adhere to strict face covering requirements and submit to regular, ongoing COVID-19 [Chinese coronavirus] testing,” Gov. Larry Hogan’s (R-MD) office announced in a press release. Employees must receive their first coronavirus shot by September 1.
Affected employees include those who work at the following facilities, per the governor’s office:
- Department of Health
- Department of Juvenile Services
- Department of Public Safety and Corrections
- Department of Veterans Affairs
Like other politicians implementing additional coronavirus mandates, Hogan attributed the updated mandate to the delta variant.
“We know that right now the Delta variant accounts for nearly 100% of the new cases currently being sequenced in Maryland and it accounts for 93% of all the cases nationwide,” Hogan said in a statement.
“We also understand that it may cause more severe illness than earlier variants. We do need to take the Delta variant very seriously,” he continued.
Maryland is not the only state such action, forcing vaccine requirements on a sector of workers. This week, California became the first state to mandate all healthcare workers to get vaccinated, with limited exceptions.
“As we respond to the dramatic increase in cases, all health care workers must be vaccinated to reduce the chance of transmission to vulnerable populations,” the California Department of Public Health announced Thursday.
“For these reasons, COVID-19 remains a concern to public health and, in order to prevent its further spread in hospitals, SNFs, and other health care settings, new public health requirements are necessary at this time,” it added.