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White House Mandates Vaccine By This Date for 80 Million Americans

The new rules were announced today.
FACT CHECKED BY Emilia Paluszek

Today, the White House announced two new rules that will affect two-thirds of Americans, so listen up. The "requirement for employers with 100 or more employees to ensure each of their workers is fully vaccinated or tests for COVID-19 on at least a weekly basis" will be in effect formally by January 4th. Also, "the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services (CMS) at the Department of Health and Human Services is announcing the details of its requirement that health care workers at facilities participating in Medicare and Medicaid are fully vaccinated," says the White House. Speaking to unvaccinated adults: "What more is there to wait for?" President Biden asked. "What more do you need to see?" Read on for what you have to do by January 4th—and to ensure your health and the health of others, don't miss these Sure Signs You've Already Had COVID.


If You Work Somewhere With 100 or More Employees, You Must Be Vaccinated No Later Than January 4th, Or Else

Woman in medical face mask getting Covid-19 vaccine at the hospital

"The Administration has previously implemented policies requiring millions of federal employees and federal contractors to be fully vaccinated," said the White House. "To make it easy for businesses and workers to comply, the Administration is announcing today that the deadline for workers to receive their shots will be the same for the OSHA rule, the CMS rule, and the previously-announced federal contractor vaccination requirement. Across all three requirements, workers will need to have the necessary shots to be fully vaccinated – either two doses of Pfizer or Moderna, or one dose of Johnson & Johnson – no later than January 4, 2022. OSHA is also clarifying that it will not apply its new rule to workplaces covered by either the CMS rule or the federal contractor vaccination requirement. And, both OSHA and CMS are making clear that their new rules preempt any inconsistent state or local laws, including laws that ban or limit an employer's authority to require vaccination, masks, or testing."

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Here are the Details of What Exactly Will Happen by January 4th

covid vaccination card

"All covered employers must ensure that their employees have received the necessary shots to be fully vaccinated – either two doses of Pfizer or Moderna, or one dose of Johnson & Johnson – by January 4th. After that, all covered employers must ensure that any employees who have not received the necessary shots begin producing a verified negative test to their employer on at least a weekly basis, and they must remove from the workplace any employee who receives a positive COVID-19 test or is diagnosed with COVID-19 by a licensed health care provider. The ETS lays out the wide variety of tests that comply with the standard. Given that vaccines are safe, free, and the most effective way for workers to be protected from COVID-19 transmission at work, the ETS does not require employers to provide or pay for tests. Employers may be required to pay for testing because of other laws or collective bargaining agreements," said the White House.

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You Can Get Paid Time Off to Get Vaccinated

Check-in for coronavirus vaccination against Covid-19 with doctor in the background.

"All covered employers are required to provide paid-time for their employees to get vaccinated and, if needed, sick leave to recover from side effects experienced that keep them from working," said the White House.

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If You Remain Unvaccinated, You Must Wear a Mask

Woman working textile factory during the COVID-19 pandemic and fixing her facemask

"All covered employers must ensure that unvaccinated employees wear a face mask while in the workplace," said the White House. "While the testing requirement for unvaccinated workers will begin after January 4th, employers must be in compliance with all other requirements – such as providing paid-time for employees to get vaccinated and masking for unvaccinated workers – on December 5th. The Administration is calling on all employers to step up and make these changes as quickly as possible."

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Vaccinations Work

Coffee shop woman owner with face mask, open after lockdown quarantine.

"The Administration is calling on all employers to ensure that as many of their workers are vaccinated as quickly as possible. As detailed in a recent White House report, vaccination requirements work and are good for the economy. Vaccination requirements have increased vaccination rates by more than 20 percentage points – to over 90 percent – across a wide range of businesses and organizations. According to Wall Street analysts, vaccination requirements could result in as many as 5 million American workers going back to work, and a survey of prominent, independent economists found unanimous agreement that vaccination requirements will 'promote a faster and stronger economic recovery,'" said the White House. So get vaccinated, and to protect your life and the lives of others, don't visit any of these 35 Places You're Most Likely to Catch COVID.

Alek Korab
Alek Korab is a Co-Founder and Managing Editor of the ETNT Health channel on Eat This, Not That! Read more