Republicans in New York’s congressional delegation are demanding that Gov. Kathy Hochul scrap COVID-19 vaccine mandates for medical staff to deal with a nursing scarcity in hospitals and nursing properties.
“The proof is obvious. The staffing scarcity affecting New York’s well being care sector is a disaster and should be addressed,” Rep. Claudia Tenney mentioned in a letter to Hochul co-signed by eight different GOP Home members — together with serial fibber Rep. George Santos and Home GOP Convention Chair Elise Stefanik.
“It’s crucial on your administration to drop its COVID-19 mandate instantly in order that well being care staff can return to serving their buddies, family members and neighbors,” the GOP members of Congress informed Hochul.
The attraction dovetails with a $250 million lawsuit filed yesterday by former New York Metropolis staff who misplaced their jobs for refusing to get jabbed and who search to finish vaccine mandates for public staff.
The vaccine edict for medical staff was imposed to assist tamp down COVID-19 outbreaks in medical services — notably nursing properties, the place greater than 15,000 frail, aged sufferers have been stricken with the bug and died — and hospitals.
COVID-19 deaths skyrocketed by almost a 3rd in New York state final month as the brand new contagious Kraken Omicron variant of the coronavirus swept by means of the populace — making it unlikely that public well being officers would rescind the vaccine mandate.
Ending vaccination and masking necessities has develop into a significant speaking level and rallying cry for Republicans who imagine the federal government edicts have been counterproductive.
Florida Gov. Ron DeSantis, thought-about a number one GOP contender for president in 2024, has proposed a state legislation to finish vaccine and masks mandates within the Sunshine State.
However public well being officers mentioned rescinding vaccine necessities for well being care staff is irresponsible — and will worsen, not reduce, staffing shortages by having extra staff out sick.
“We’d be capturing ourselves within the foot,” mentioned Dr. Ayman El-Mohandes, dean of CUNY’s Graduate College of Public Well being.
“To have medical professionals offering care to sufferers not vaccinated isn’t accountable. Who advantages from this? Sufferers don’t profit — well being care staff don’t profit.”
Within the letter to Hochul, Tenney and the GOP delegation mentioned long-term nursing sufferers are flooding hospitals due to a scarcity of nurses and beds.
Additionally they mentioned well being care suppliers are spending “exponentially extra” to take care of staffing, and “this can not go on any longer.”
“Whereas the shortages have been an ongoing problem, they proceed to be exacerbated by New York’s draconian COVID-19 vaccine mandate for well being care staff, which has pressured almost 34,000 well being care staff out of their jobs.”
The letter to Hochul was additionally co-signed by GOP Reps. Nicole Malliotakis, Anthony D’Esposito, Andrew Garbarino, Michael Lawler, Nick Langworthy and Nick LaLota.
Hochul’s workplace had no quick remark.
Final yr, Hochul did rescind a requirement for well being care staff to get COVID booster photographs following an outcry from well being care business officers about staffing woes.