More than 100 Republicans in Congress have signed a letter to Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services Administrator Chiquita Brooks-LaSure opposing the federal COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare employees.
The letter, which was led by Republican Reps. Vern Buchanan of Florida and Larry Bucshon of Indiana, asks the CMS to cease their plans for a vaccine mandate after a federal court last week put a halt to the order in 10 states, after which CMS temporarily suspended enforcement of the rule, according to Fox News.
''It is difficult, if not impossible, to reconcile the rationale for implementing a mandate like this at the tail end of the pandemic while we, as a nation, are struggling to staff hospitals, physician offices and other ancillary providers,'' the letter reads.
''This one-size-fits-all big government mandate has the potential to hammer small and medium-sized health care providers across the country through increased compliance costs, staffing shortages and crippling fines at a time when they can least afford it,'' Buchanan told the news network in an email on Monday.
''Even worse, this unconstitutional power grab could reduce access to care for millions of seniors who rely on these businesses for essential health care services,'' Buchanan continued.
''Hospitals, long-term care facilities, and other health care providers are struggling to keep their doors open, and those located in rural areas are disproportionately feeling the impacts of chronic, widespread labor shortages that are being exacerbated by the COVID-19 pandemic,'' added Bucshon, who is a physician himself.
''Today, I led a letter with more than 110 members of Congress asking the Biden administration to repeal their federal vaccine mandate on health care workers that stands to threaten patients' access to quality medical care, as well as the size and scope of our nation's health care industry during the worst global health crisis of our generation,'' he said.
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