Update on province’s vaccination mandate
Last week the province released a second update on the vaccination rates of workers in healthcare, longterm care, education and emergency health services. Employers are required to collect and report vaccination rates as part of the COVID-19 vaccine mandate announced on Sept. 29. Under the mandate, all employees are required to have at least a first dose of vaccine by Nov. 30, with a requirement to show proof of full vaccination 70 days after their first dose. “Those who are partially vaccinated may be subjected to other health and safety measures, including testing,” reads a Nov. 17 media release. “Those who do not have a first dose by Nov. 30 will be placed on unpaid leave.” As of Nov. 16, the vaccination rates of employees who had reported were: • Nova Scotia Health Authority: 94 per cent vaccinated • IWK Health Centre: 99 per cent • Long-term care: 93 per cent • Home care: 89 per cent • Education: 97 per cent • Emergency Health Services (EHS): 99 per cent Data collection continues. Another update of numbers was to be released on Nov. 24, with final numbers released in early December. The COVID-19 vaccine mandate covers more than 80,000 employees. The following groups are included: • Nova Scotia Health Authority and IWK Health Centre • workers in long-term care facilities and home-care agencies • public school teachers, pre-primary and other school-based staff, regional and board office staff, and those providing services in schools, including cafeteria and school bus services • early childhood educators and staff in regulated child care, as well as any volunteers, practicum students, or other professionals entering these settings • Hearing and Speech Nova Scotia • workers in residential facilities and day programs funded by the Department of Community Services Disability Support Program and adult day programs funded by Department of Seniors and LongTerm Care • workers in Department of Community Services facilities and those providing placements for children and youth in the care of the Minister of Community Services (excluding foster family placements) • paramedics, LifeFlight nurses and some other staff at EHS • physicians and other service providers to the above organizations • correctional officers, youth workers, volunteers, visitors, contractors and service providers who work in, or provide service to, adult or youth correctional facilities.