Carilion Clinic will require its employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Jan. 4.
The announcement comes after President Joe Biden announced earlier this month that staff at health care facilities who participate in the Medicare and Medicaid programs must be vaccinated.
An emergency regulation was issued by the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services.
“Like healthcare systems across the country, we are complying with the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services mandate, which requires healthcare organizations to fully vaccinate their teams against COVID-19 as a term of employment,” Carilion spokesperson Hannah Curtis said Tuesday in an email.
There are exceptions for religious or medical reasons.
According to CMS, the presence of COVID-19 in health care settings increases the risk of unvaccinated staff contracting the virus and transmitting it to patients.
The regulation requires all facilities to ensure eligible staff have received the first dose of a two-dose vaccine or a one-dose vaccine before Dec. 6. Employees must be fully vaccinated by Jan. 4.
Carilion Clinic, headquartered in Roanoke, has more than 10,000 employees, according to city of Roanoke statistics, and is by far the valley’s major employer.