Although US President Joe Biden’s administration has repeatedly urged Americans to get vaccinated against covid-19 as soon as possible, millions continue to hesitate or refuse vaccines altogether. The federal government does not have the power to mandate vaccination, but so-called vaccination orders have recently been reported to by a number of large companies, universities, hospitals, and individual states and local authorities. At the same time, similar initiatives are likely to increase, experts believe.
Technology giants Facebook, Google and Microsoft, alternative taxi companies Uber and Lyft, the largest private employer Walmart, the largest food producer in the USA Tyson Foods, film and streaming companies Netflix and Disney, and possibly Morgan Stanley and Goldmans banks are already demanding vaccinations from their employees. Sachs. This week, they were joined by United Airlines – the first of the major American airlines.
Most companies try to get employees to vaccinate, for example by offering a financial bonus or extra days off. From a certain date, some companies will stop letting unvaccinated workers and visitors into their offices, or they will require them to test regularly for coronavirus, wear a veil, and keep their distance from other employees.
More than 600 American universities have already taken a similar step, banning unvaccinated people from entering classrooms or the entire school campus. Their number is likely to increase, as a court in Indiana in July rejected a complaint from some students at the university that such a measure was unconstitutional.
Mandatory vaccinations are also slowly being introduced by some hospitals, including the prestigious Mayo Clinic network. It does so following a joint statement by most major medical associations calling on healthcare providers to issue vaccination orders. However, many establishments continue to fear such steps, mainly due to threats of possible lawsuits or fears that some hard-to-replace employees will leave.
The federal government is also taking some action within its powers. Biden has ordered compulsory vaccination of more than two million federal employees, although they are not in danger of being fired if they do not follow his call. However, they will need to be tested regularly and follow other anti-epidemic measures in the workplace.
The Ministry of Veterans Affairs has also ordered the vaccination of all paramedics in the hospitals under its administration. The office is one of the largest healthcare providers in the United States, affecting about 100,000 people.
Biden also called on the US military to include the covid-19 vaccine on the list of vaccines required for members of the US military. Secretary of Defense Lloyd Austin then said that he would probably come up with a similar regulation soon.
Measures have also been taken by some states, such as California and New York, which require vaccination of all government employees. New York City will also be the first in the United States to want a vaccination card for anyone who wants to participate in most activities in public indoor spaces, such as visiting a bar, restaurant, gym, or a show.
However, most companies, hospitals and local authorities continue to hesitate to order compulsory vaccination. Many of them consider the biggest obstacle to be the fact that none of the covid vaccines deployed have yet received full approval from US regulators. In the United States, as elsewhere in the world, it is now vaccinated with Pfizer / BioNTech, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson vaccines on special license.
Following the full approval of the first vaccines, which experts expect this autumn, there will probably be more and more orders for vaccination among American employers. This trend will also reinforce the expected continued increase in the daily number of newly infected people associated with the spread of a contagious variant of coronavirus called delta, experts say.
However, the United States will remain geographically divided in this regard. More than 50 percent of the country’s population is now fully vaccinated, and Biden and other members of his administration have repeatedly referred to the current phase of the spread as an “unvaccinated pandemic.” Most new infections and people admitted to hospitals due to the severe course of covid-19 occur in the countries with the lowest vaccinations.
These are mostly ruled by Republican politicians, who publicly oppose compulsory vaccination and take steps to prevent such orders. According to experts, such a procedure is as legally defensible as the ordering of compulsory vaccination by some actors in other parts of the USA.