Mayo Clinic fires approximately 700 unvaccinated employees

Published: Jan. 5, 2022 at 3:33 PM EST
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ROCHESTER, Minn. (KTTC/Gray News) - Mayo Clinic confirmed it has fired hundreds of employees because workers refused to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

KTTC reports the large nonprofit health care employer terminated approximately 1% of its 73,000-person workforce across all locations. Its major campuses are located in Minnesota, Florida and Arizona.

Mayo Clinic first announced it would mandate vaccines for its staff in July 2021 before enforcing a Jan. 3 deadline to comply with the mandate.

“While Mayo Clinic is saddened to lose valuable employees, we need to take all steps necessary to keep our patients, workforce, visitors and communities safe,” spokesperson Kelley Luckstein said in a statement. “If individuals released from employment choose to get vaccinated at a later date, the opportunity exists for them to apply and return to Mayo Clinic for future job openings.”

Groups of people against the mandate gathered outside the Mayo Clinic’s headquarters in Rochester, Minnesota on Monday to protest the nonprofit medical center’s vaccine mandate.

Protesters holding posters in downtown Rochester on January 3.
Protesters holding posters in downtown Rochester on January 3.(KTTC)

“As a nurse, my medical exemption was denied my first round, and my appeal was approved,” Kari Wendt told KTTC. “I was very close to being in those shoes today.”

Many at the protest argued workers should have the personal freedom to make their own medical decision regarding the COVID-19 vaccine.

Mayo Clinic said the vaccine mandate was based on science and data pointing toward vaccines keeping people out of hospitals and saving lives.

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