Human Resources Legislative Update
Ontario Announces Mandatory Vaccination Requirements for Long-Term Care Homes
Date: October 4, 2021
On October 1, 2021, the Ontario government announced that COVID-19 vaccinations will become mandatory for all in-home staff, support workers, students, and volunteers in long-term care homes, unless a valid medical exemption is presented. These individuals will have until November 15, 2021 to show proof that they have received all required doses of a COVID-19 vaccine, or to show proof of a valid medical exemption.
In addition to mandatory vaccination, the following requirements will also apply:
- staff who do not have all required doses or a valid medical exemption by the deadline will not be able to enter a long-term care home to work
- newly hired staff must be fully vaccinated before they begin working in a home unless they have a valid medical exemption
- homes will begin randomly testing fully vaccinated individuals, including staff, caregivers and visitors, to help detect possible breakthrough cases of COVID-19 as early as possible.
The following measures already in place at long-term care homes will continue:
- individuals who are not fully vaccinated will be regularly tested
- staff who are fully vaccinated will be able to work in more than one long-term care home, retirement home or other health service provider setting
- the requirement to track and report on the implementation of their policies, which includes overall staff immunization rates.
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