Most hospitals encourage — but do not require — employees to be vaccinated.
HOUSTON — This week, Houston Methodist suspended 178 employees for not being fully vaccinated as part of its COVID-19 vaccine mandate. Even there, 285 employees have been granted religious or medical exemptions, and another 332 were granted deferrals for pregnancy and other reasons.
A spokesperson for Houston Methodist says unvaccinated employees undergo regular COVID-19 testing. All employees are required to wear PPE.
However, the COVID-19 vaccine is encouraged but not mandated at most other hospitals.
Do patients have the right to know if the people in the room treating them are vaccinated?
KHOU 11 legal analyst Carmen Roe says you’re free to ask your doctor or nurse if they’ve received the COVID-19 vaccine, but it’s up to the healthcare worker if they choose to answer.
“It’s a personal choice for everyone, and physicians are not any different. You could not go to a hospital and inquire about medical records associated with anyone who works there, because they’re private,” Roe said.
It is your right to pick where you receive care.
“A lot of people don’t think of it this way, but hospitals are businesses like everyone else. If you don’t feel comfortable with not getting the answer you want or you’re not comfortable being at that location, you have the right to go somewhere else, and you have the right to go to a physician who wants to share that information,” Roe said.
CDC guidelines still call for hospitals to require masks for everyone regardless of their vaccination status.