July 29, 2021
Fredericksburg, VA, July 29, 2021—Mary Washington Healthcare (MWHC) announced this week that they
will require COVID-19 immunization for employees, medical staff, and volunteers
by October 31, 2021.
Over the course of the pandemic, MWHC has been transparent with staff and
the community when sharing the science behind COVID-19 and the vaccines.
And the evidence is clear—the vaccines are safe and effective at
preventing hospitalizations and deaths from COVID-19 and subsequent variants.
“We have a responsibility to provide a safe work environment for
our Associates, medical staff, and volunteers while protecting our patients
from harm,” says Mike McDermott, MD, MBA, President and CEO of Mary
The Virginia Hospital & Healthcare Association (VHHA) and American
Hospital Association both announced their support of health systems requiring
immunization for their employees. According to the VHHA statement, “VHHA
supports hospitals and health systems amending their existing vaccine
policies to require COVID-19 vaccines for their health care employees.
Hospital and health system employee vaccination against COVID-19 will
maintain the long-term ability of our health care system to respond to
the pandemic, to safely care for patients by protecting them from infection,
and to mitigate the spread of the virus within health care facilities
and among clinicians, patients, and their families and friends.”
MWHC required all staff, medical staff, and volunteers to receive an influenza
vaccination last year and will continue the policy in 2021. “Along
with our influenza immunization policy, requiring COVID-19 vaccination
aligns with our mission to improve the health of the people in the communities
we serve,” Dr. McDermott stated in an internal memo to all employees
and medical staff.
Dr. McDermott encourages all eligible Virginians not currently vaccinated
to plan to be vaccinated against COVID-19. “I support the joint
statement from Virginia healthcare organizations released last week,”
says Dr. McDermott. “While we have provided almost 200,000 vaccines
in our clinic at MWHC, we know that the vaccination rate in our region
and the state needs to grow to combat the COVID-19 variants negatively
impacting the unvaccinated in our community.”
According to the Centers for Disease Control, more than 99 percent of current
cases, hospitalizations, and deaths are among the unvaccinated.
About Mary Washington Healthcare
Mary Washington Healthcare is a fully integrated, regional medical system
that provides inpatient and outpatient care through over 50 facilities
including Mary Washington Hospital, a 471-bed regional medical center,
and Stafford Hospital, a 100-bed community hospital. Mary Washington Healthcare
is a not-for-profit health system with a longstanding commitment to provide
care regardless of ability to pay. For more information about our services
and facilities, visit mwhc.com.