ICS Staff | Aug 25, 2021 | 0
Executive Order Mandates COVID-19 Vaccination for All Healthcare Workers in Illinois
As many of you already know, today, Governor Pritzker announced a new Executive Order that includes a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for all healthcare workers, P-12 school employees, and higher education students and employees. The mandate does apply to a broad range of healthcare facilities including physician offices, which would include chiropractic physicians and their staff.
According to the Executive Order (2021-20), Physicians and all staff in these settings are required to receive their first dose of a two-dose vaccination series or a single-dose vaccination by September 19, 2021 (reflects extended start date). Please note, for the two-dose vaccination series the second dose is required to be received within 30 days following the first dose.
The Executive Order requires the healthcare facility (including chiropractic offices) to require vaccination evidence from all physicians and staff. To prove vaccination status, a healthcare worker can provide the following: (1) a copy or photograph of a CDC vaccination card, (2) documentation of vaccination from a health care provider or electronic health record, or (3) state immunization records.
However, the order does provide the option for regular testing for individuals who do not wish to receive the vaccine, have a medical exemption, a religious exemption, or an ADA qualified disability that prohibits vaccination:
- Testing must be completed at least weekly,
- Testing for healthcare workers is required to be conducted on site or they must provide proof they obtained the test elsewhere (practice owners should retain evidence of the test in the employees’ employment file),
- The frequency of testing could increase through emergency orders from the Department of Public Health,
- The test must either have Emergency Use Authorization from the United States Food and Drug Administration or be a test operated by per the Laboratory Developed Test requirements by the U.S. Medicare and Medicaid Services,
- [Updated 9/7/2021] Although the cost of testing is not addressed in this Executive Order, IDPH released a FAQ that states, “Pursuant to a federal Executive Order and guidance from CMS, Department of Labor, and Department of Treasury, health plans must provide coverage for COVID-19 diagnostic tests for individuals who are asymptomatic and who have no known or suspected exposure to COVID-19. Such testing must be covered without cost sharing, prior authorization, or other medical management requirements.”
The Executive Order does not specify penalties for non-compliance. However, non-compliance may very well be considered unprofessional conduct under the Medical Practice Act, and non-complying physicians and/or practices may be subject to license discipline.
The Illinois Chiropractic Society will continue to monitor this and all other Executive Orders and emergency rules and notify our members of any changes.
Click here to view the Executive Order.