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One In Three Employers Require Covid Vaccination And It’s Only The Beginning

At least one in three U.S. employers are requiring their workers to be vaccinated against Covid-19 and that’s only the beginning of such employer mandates, new worker and employer surveys show.

A new analysis of employer data from the global health benefits consultancy Mercer shows 36% of employers have “some type of vaccine mandate already in place.” The results come from a survey in October that had 1,000 respondents in less than a week, Mercer said.

“Workplace vaccination requirements were already gaining momentum before President Biden unveiled the Covid-19 action, driven by the need to safely return employees to their worksites and protect customers,” said Mercer’s director of health research, Beth Umland, referring to the White House effort to require vaccination for companies with 100 workers or more.

Momentum is building among even more U.S. employers to require vaccination against Covid-19 as the virus continues its spread in certain parts of the country. Meanwhile, companies are working on ways to make their employees feel comfortable returning to work and see requiring everybody to be vaccinated as key to health and safety of all workers against the Coronavirus.

The latest Kaiser Family Foundation poll shows one-quarter, or 25% of workers “say their employer has a vaccine requirement.” That is up from just 9% in June, the Kaiser analysis showed.  

The Kaiser data showed about one-fifth of workers want their employer to require vaccinations but even more, or 51%, don’t want their employer to require Covid-19 vaccinations. And this is a concern of employers pondering requirements and whether workers will flee their employment.

“The majority of employers remain concerned about the impact of the mandate on turnover,” Mercer’s Umland said. “Employers will need to focus on effective communications and may want to consider testing options as well.”

But so far vaccination mandates aren’t impacting employee turnover much.

“There was no impact on turnover for 71% of those with mandates in place; however, 25% saw a slight increase in turnover (1%-5% above normal) and 4% saw a significant increase (more than 5% above normal),” the Mercer analysis said.

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