A Houston-based hospital system has suspended 178 employees without pay for two weeks for refusing to get the coronavirus vaccine, according to reports.
Houston Methodist CEO Marc Boom wrote in an internal message obtained by the Washington Post Tuesday that nearly 25,000 of the health care system’s employees were fully vaccinated by Monday’s deadline — but some chose not to comply.
“Of these employees, 27 have received one dose of vaccine, so I am hopeful they will get their second doses soon,” Boom wrote. “I know that today may be difficult for some who are sad about losing a colleague who’s decided to not get vaccinated. We only wish them well and thank them for their past service to our community, and we must respect the decision they made.”
“No one should be forced to put something into their body if they’re not comfortable with it,” said Jennifer Bridges, a Houston Methodist nurse of six-plus years who has long opposed the policy. Bridges told the Washington Post in May she has objected to getting the shot because vaccines authorized for emergency use nationwide have not been “fully” approved by the Food and Drug Administration.
“I’m not anti-vaccine,” Bridge said last month. “I’ve had every vaccine known to man, except this one. As nurses and medical staff, everybody feels like you should have a right to choose what you put in your body.”