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2. Vaccine mandates created concerns over comp records

Posted On: Dec. 29, 2021 7:56 AM CST

vaccine mandate

Nearing mid-year 2021, the demand for COVID-19 vaccinations stalled in the U.S., which led some employers to see vaccine mandates as the only way to get all their employees to roll up their sleeves.

Experts were quick to point out — again — that under such mandates, injuries or illnesses reported by employees from the vaccine could lead to workers compensation claims and recordable incidents on Occupational Safety and Health Administration logs.

With the stakes so high, the issue of mandating vaccines garnered much attention on Business Insurance’s website in 2021, including the second most read workers comp story of the year.

By May, several medical institutions had begun issuing mandates, with the Houston Methodist hospital system the first to say it would require its 26,000 employees to be vaccinated for COVID-19 or be subject to suspension and/or termination. Other institutions followed suit, with several —as well as Houston Methodist — facing litigation from employees who argued the mandates could possibly endanger their health as the COVID-19 vaccines were so new.

Late in May, OSHA changed course and said it would no longer require that employers with mandatory vaccination programs record vaccine reactions.

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