Federal judges have ordered a temporary halt to the start of mandatory vaccination for millions of health care workers across the country.
In Louisiana, a U.S. District Judge said that the federal Center for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) cannot enforce mandates it was requiring of hospital systems, nursing homes, and other health care entities that do business with Medicare and Medicaid. CMS is trying to require vaccination by a January 4 deadline.
The government is counting on compliance by threatening to withhold funds from groups that do not successfully press their workers to get vaccinated, or fire the ones who refuse.
There is no question that mandating a vaccine to 10.3 million health care workers is something that should be done by Congress, not a government agency…It is not clear that even an act of Congress mandating a vaccine would be constitutional."U.S. District Judge Terry Doughty, Louisiana
A federal judge in Kentucky also temporarily blocked vaccine mandates in Kentucky, Ohio, and Tennessee, pending the outcome of legal challenges.
Meantime, a federal judge in Missouri had already temporarily halted vaccine mandates for health care workers in 10 states.
The mandates are controversial for many reasons.
According to CDC, Covid-19 is a non-serious disease in most people, but Covid-19 vaccines are associated with risks and side effects, some of them potentially fatal.
Another issue is that the federal government would consider workers to be “fully vaccinated” if they had two shots many months ago, and no booster, even though CDC and scientists say the spacing between those shots was not adequate to provide long-lasting protection against infection and spread of Covid-19.
Additionally, the federal mandates ignore the impact of natural immunity. They seek to force vaccination among millions of people who have fought off Covid and already have better immunity than the vaccines provide, according to dozens of scientific studies.