New York Governor Kathy Hochul (D) announced she may tap the National Guard to fill hospital staffing shortages brought on by unvaccinated workers who won’t meet the Monday deadline to receive the injection.
In a bid to put the pressure on healthcare workers who haven’t taken the jab, Hochul released a statement Saturday outlining how she may declare a state of emergency to replace them with out-of-state medical workers and medically-trained National Guard members to keep hospitals properly staffed.
“We are still in a battle against COVID to protect our loved ones, and we need to fight with every tool at our disposal,” Gov. Hochul said. “I am monitoring the staffing situation closely, and we have a plan to increase our health care workforce and help alleviate the burdens on our hospitals and other health care facilities.”
“I commend all of the health care workers who have stepped up to get themselves vaccinated, and I urge all remaining health care workers who are unvaccinated to do so now so they can continue providing care,” she added.
About 16% of the state’s 450,000 hospital staff – roughly 70,000 workers – have still not received the COVID jab, the governor’s office said.
Thousands of New Yorkers have been protesting the COVID vaccine mandate since it was imposed earlier this month.
Despite the media narrative that hospitals are overwhelmed due to worker shortages, hospitals and medical centers are nevertheless preparing to lay off thousands of workers who do not want or need to take the COVID injection.