As of August 17, 2021, the Government of Ontario mandated further workplace environments that are required to implement COVID-19 vaccine policies and have staff vaccinated, such as the previously released requirements for long-term care homes. These new vaccine requirements now apply to hospitals and home community care service providers.
These vaccine requirements are to be implemented as of September 7, 2021, and must apply to employees, staff, contractors, students, and volunteers. The implementation of this policy would require individuals in applicable workplaces to provide proof of either of the 3 options:
- Full vaccination (both doses) for COVID-19
- Medical reasoning for not getting the COVID-19 vaccine
- Completion of training in relation to COVID-19 vaccination education
As per these new requirements, the absence of any of the above will result in individuals being required to take part in regular weekly COVID-19 testing. In addition, these vaccine requirements are also expected to be introduced to further sectors including education, shelters, retirement homes, etc., as high-risk settings.
It is also important to note that in addition to these new vaccine requirements, the government of Ontario will be soon offering third vaccine doses to vulnerable individuals to add extra protection against the Delta variant.
Currently, the government of Ontario is closely monitoring the risks associated with the Delta variant and has paused the Roadmap to Reopen plan in terms of removing restrictions. It is important to ensure that all employees are aware of what these new requirements mean for their sector and what their responsibilities are.