vaccine mandate

Advocate Aurora Says More Than 400 Employees Fired or Left Due to Vaccine Mandate

More than 400 employees at Advocate Aurora Health have either left the health care company or been fired for not complying with a vaccine mandate, the hospital group said.

In total, about 440 team members, representing 0.6% of Advocate Aurora's workforce, "were not in compliance and have parted ways with the organization," the group said in a statement.

"With about 99% of our team members compliant or in the process of becoming compliant with our vaccine policy, we are protecting the health and safety of our patients, communities and each other," the statement read.

The group noted that about half of the 440 employees were not full-time employees and were scheduled on an "as-needed basis."

The group represents 26 hospitals and 500 care sites in Illinois and Wisconsin. About half of the employees no longer with the company worked at Illinois centers while the other were in Wisconsin, the hospital group said.

The vaccine deadline for the company was Oct. 15.

"Team members not in compliance were given a three-day suspension to have one last chance to come into compliance," Advocate Aurora Health said in its statement.

The company announced in August that it would require all team members to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 15, with "limited exceptions for specific religious or medical reasons." The requirement applies to the company's 75,000 team members across Illinois and Wisconsin, including remote workers and those who don't directly work with patients.

“Our ultimate duty is to protect the health and safety of our team members, patients and communities,” President and CEO Jim Skogsbergh told team members at the time. “The data is overwhelming. This vaccine is safe, and it’s highly effective in preventing infection and even more so, serious illness and death."

Advocate Aurora is far from the only company mandating vaccinations for employees.

According to a memo sent to employees late last month, Chicago-based United Airlines warned it would soon begin terminating hundreds of employees who refused the company’s coronavirus vaccine requirement.

Vaccine mandates have also been making headlines in Chicago as a battle unfolds between the city and its police union over the requirement.

Chicago Police Supt. David Brown said this week that 21 officers have been placed on no-pay status as a result of failure to put their information into the city’s vaccination portal.

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