LITTLE ROCK, Ark. – Leaders at Arkansas Children’s Hospital announced Thursday that they will require all new hires, as well as managers and hospital leadership, to get a COVID-19 vaccine.
According to a letter from hospital president and CEO Marcy Doderer, all new Arkansas Children’s employment offers made starting on August 16 will require new hires to get a first vaccine dose by their start date, with a second dose being received within 30 days of employment.
The hospital is requiring all leaders, from managers to executives, to receive their first vaccine dose by no later than August 20 as a condition of employment. Those leaders will then be required to be fully vaccinated by September 30.
Officials with the hospital say that currently 90 percent of those leaders are already vaccinated.
Doderer’s letter does note that the hospital will continue to follow its practice of accommodating religious and medical exemptions,
She also noted that this new requirement comes as the University of Arkansas for Medical Sciences is reporting the state to have more than a 20 percent positivity rate, which is five times the national average, while Arkansas Children’s is already nearing capacity with Respiratory Syncytial Virus (RSV) and COVID-19 patients.
This is a developing story. Please check back for updates.