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OKLAHOMA CITY (KFOR) – A local hospital system says it is joining dozens of others across the country in requiring employees to be vaccinated against COVID-19.

On Thursday, officials with OU Health announced that employees and students on rotations will need to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by the end of next month.

“For the health and safety of our patients and those who care for them, OU Health is requiring its faculty, staff, trainees/students on rotations, and employees in patient and non-patient care areas complete COVID-19 vaccination by August 31, 2021, regardless if they have previously had COVID-19. These employees are required to show proof of completion of COVID-19 vaccination two weeks prior to the due date of August 31. Completed vaccination means the person has received the second dose of Pfizer or Moderna or a single dose of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 vaccine. Under very limited circumstances, employees may be able to decline the vaccine. Approved reasons include a medical contraindication or religious belief. OU Health truly anticipates that our efforts will protect our patients and employees and will help stop the spread of the virus that causes COVID-19.”

Kris Gose, RN, Interim Chief Operating Officer of OU Health

Effective June 1, 2021, prior to the OU Health merger, the University of Oklahoma issued a policy requiring faculty, staff and students with patient-facing responsibility to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, subject to limited declination options.