About 14 staff members at Erie Shores HealthCare in Leamington, Ont., have been penalized for not getting their COVID-19 shots by the deadlines set out by their employer.
The hospital set Monday as a deadline for all staff and physicians to have had at least one dose of the vaccine to continue working unless an approved exemption is provided.
A spokesperson for the hospital confirmed that 97 per cent of staff at Erie Shores HealthCare have received at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine or have provided a medical or human rights exemption for not receiving one.
However, 14 staff have been impacted by the policy, including two people who have been terminated and another 12 people who have been placed on a two-week unpaid leave of absence.
The hospital is one of five Erie St Clair hospital organizations in southwestern Ontario — including Windsor Regional hospital and Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare in Windsor, Bluewater Heath in Sarnia, and the Chatham-Kent Health Alliance — who have agreed to the same policy.
Last Wednesday, dozens of people gathered to protest outside of Windsor Regional Hospital's Met campus, a week after the health-care facility suspended workers who did not meet their vaccine policy deadline.
Among the protesters were vaccinated and unvaccinated health-care workers, according to a letter given to CBC News.
About 172 staff members at Windsor Regional Hospital (WRH) and Hôtel-Dieu Grace Healthcare were suspended without pay for not getting their COVID-19 shots by the deadlines set out by their employers.
Both hospitals had set Wednesday, Sept. 22, as a deadline for all staff and physicians to have had at least one dose of the vaccine to continue working unless an approved exemption was provided.
In a media statement Wednesday, Windsor Regional Hospital CEO David Musyj and chief of staff Dr. Wassim Saad emphasized that they are proud that 97.3 per cent of hospital staff have chosen to be vaccinated. They say there are 113 people out of the originally announced 147, who remained unvaccinated at that hospital.