Texas Hospital Faces Closure Over COVID-19 Vaccine Orders: CEO | WHAT REALLY HAPPENED X-Frame-Options: DENY X-Frame-Options: SAMEORIGIN

Texas Hospital Faces Closure Over COVID-19 Vaccine Orders: CEO

Administrators at rural hospitals say they’re frustrated and concerned after president Joe Biden mandated all hospital staff get the COVID-19 vaccine. Some of that stems from inconsistency from regulatory agencies and conflicting orders. Governor Abbott recently prohibited public hospitals from mandating their staff to get the shot.

“How’s Governor Abbott going to take this? He hasn’t complied with anything federal laws have done so far. So, we’re going have to, here in Texas at least, we’re going to have to wait and see how that plays out,” Jerry Jasper, CEO at Brownfield Regional Medical Center said.

According to a 2019 report from the Texas Organization of Rural and Community Hospitals, 26 rural hospitals have closed in Texas in the last decade. The organization cites the driving force behind the closures is Medicare cuts totaling $50 million a year, and a $100 million a year underpayment by Texas Medicaid. Now, the Medicare and Medicaid funding the hospitals do receive is at risk if staffers don’t get the vaccine.

Jasper says nursing agencies are pulling staff away for a bigger paycheck, so losing any workers hurts rural hospitals. He says vaccines are highly encouraged, but not all of his staff have received the shot.

“20 percent of my, probably 20 to 25 percent of my staff will have to go away if that’s the case,” Jasper said.