On January 10, 2022, President Biden’s testing and vaccine mandate is scheduled to take place. These mandates call for businesses with more than one-hundred employees to either have all their employees vaccinated or provide COVID-19 test results that prove negative for the virus. According to the Biden Administration, this mandate is going to affect more than 84 million workers.
The same day, President Biden released its fact sheet regarding the upcoming mandate, OSHA released its ETS (Emergency Temporary Standard) regarding the mandates. OSHA’s ETS is the same as those President Biden is scheduling to implement on January 10th.
The following are a few questions you may have regarding these new mandates to help you understand what your company can expect.
Do Employers Have Requirement to Follow to Help Employees Get Vaccination?
Employers will be required to provide their employees with up to four hours of paid time off to receive each dose of the vaccination. If employees suffer any side effects from the vaccination, they are to be allowed paid sick leave for recovery.
What are the Consequences if a Business Does Not Comply with OSHA Regulations?
The penalties for not following the OSHA mandates on vaccinating or testing will be $13,653 for the first violation and $136,532 for any actions considered willful.
Are There Additional Requirements for Employees Besides Vaccinating or Testing?
Employers will be required to ensure all employees who have not been vaccinated wear masks.
Is There an Updated Deadline for Federal Contractors?
The deadline for Federal Contractors to be in full compliance has been extended to January 4, 2022.
When Will Tracking of Testing Efforts and Vaccinations Need to Start?
December 5th of 2021 was the deadline for employers to comply with regulations outside of the testing. Weekly testing requirements must be followed by January 4, 2022.
Who is Responsible for the Testing Costs?
Employers are not responsible for any costs connected to testing, however, they can voluntarily choose to pay if they want. There may be cases where additional regulations, laws, or negotiated agreements will require employers to pay the costs.
Are the COVID-19 Boosters Part of Current ETS OSHA Rules?
At this time the regulations only pertain to the initial doses of the COVID-19 vaccine.
What are the Vaccine Requirements for Healthcare Workers?
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services require all workers in healthcare facilities to be fully vaccinated by January 4, 2022 (in facilities that participate in Medicaid and Medicare.)
What is the Litigation Against the Mandate?
There are likely to be legal challenges, however, these guidelines will supersede other applicable state regulations.
How Does a Company Get Started?
Companies are developing systems for tracking the vaccination status of their employees. If your company does not already have a system, a new attestation process will be available through the Compliance Center service or State Forms.
What is the Intention of the Federal Vaccine Requirement?
The Federal vaccine requirement is designed to curb the rise of COVID-19 deaths, hospitalizations, and deaths. It is also a means to curb those increases in the Omicron Variant and Delta Variant as well.
Employees will need to receive both shots of the Pfizer or the Moderna vaccine or the one dose of the Johnson & Johnson before the January 10th deadline. A grace period will be allowed for compliance. Even though these mandates are not popular, the administration has put them in place to save lives, not control them.
Where to Learn More About Testing and COVID Vaccines
MCI Diagnostic Center is committed to helping your company fulfill requirements so you adhere to local, state, and federal requirements. We will provide you with unsurpassed patient care and the information you need to make clinical decisions. Talk to one of our expert specialists today if you have questions regarding COVID-19 testing.