Ochsner Health: Nearly 99 percent of employees in compliance with vaccine policy, some 280 leaving

Staff Report
An Ochsner Health mobile care unit is shown in a file photo in the Dulac area after Hurricane Ida.

Ochsner Health announced nearly 99 percent of its employees in Louisiana and Mississippi have been in compliance with the system's COVID-19 vaccination policy, while about 280 employees "will leave the organization."

According to a news release, nearly 30,000 employees have completed their COVID-19 vaccine series or have an approved medical or religious exemption. Team members with approved exemptions will undergo weekly COVID-19 testing and wear KN95 masks for added protection.

“At Ochsner Health, we remain committed to prioritizing safety and minimizing risk for our co-workers, families and loved ones, and our actions during the COVID-19 pandemic reflect this promise. That’s why we are proud to announce that nearly 99 percent of Ochsner employees have come into compliance with our vaccination policy – an action that speaks to our team’s dedication and care to those we serve every day. We are truly grateful to our healthcare heroes and community members who continue to fight COVID-19,” stated Oschner Health President and CEO Warner Thomas.

Of those leaving the organization, about 180 are PRN employees, working on an as-needed basis. Former employees in good standing will be eligible for rehire once they become compliant with this policy, according to the release.

While the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) rule requiring COVID-19 vaccination for healthcare workers has been challenged, as a private employer, Ochsner Health retains the right to enact a vaccination policy.

The current compliance rate with Ochsner’s COVID-19 vaccine policy does not include employees in Shreveport and Monroe due to pending litigation.