US | COVID-19 | The US CDC Issues Updated Guidance on COVID-19 Workplace Vaccination Programs
This month the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) issued updated guidance on COVID-19 workplace vaccination programs. The guidance provides a slew of recommendations on how employers should encourage employees to get vaccines, where to find vaccines, determine when employees can be vaccinated, and when employers should reopen their workplaces.
The guidance document provides recommendations on workforce vaccination options. CDC recommends an off-site vaccination program for small or medium sized employers that have a mobile workforce, highly variable schedules, or a majority of workers who would prefer vaccination in a community clinic. For employers who have a large number of workers with predictable schedules, the ability to enroll as a vaccination provider or engage an enrolled vaccination provider, and enough space to set up a vaccination clinic while still maintaining social distancing the CDC recommends an on-site vaccination program.
The CDC is encouraging employers to build their employees’ confidence and trust in the vaccine by encouraging leaders to be vaccine champions, communicate transparently to all workers about the vaccination, create a communication plan, provide regular updates on topics like the benefits, safety, side effects, and effectiveness of the vaccination, and make visible the decision to get vaccinated and celebrate it such providing stickers for workers to wear after vaccination.
The CDC is also recommending that employers make it easy for employees to get vaccines in ways such as offering flexible, non-punitive sick leave options for those who show signs and symptoms after vaccination.