COLUMBUS (WCMH) – Nurses at Ohio State’s Wexner Medical Center are asking to negotiate the hospital’s decision to impose COVID-19 vaccination on its staff.

A letter Tuesday from the Ohio State University Nurses Organization to a labor relations manager at Wexner Medical Center described the request.

“We are formally asking to negotiate the implementation of a new mandatory vaccine requirement for the COVID vaccine, including, but not limited to, the topics of timeline, exceptions, discipline and compensation for the time missed due to side effects of the vaccine, “reads the letter signed by the president of the nursing organization, Rick Lucas.

“Making vaccines mandatory without negotiation will only result in more people leaving the bedside at a time when numbers are already low following last year’s trauma. “

Earlier Tuesday, Wexner Medical Center joined with several other Columbus-area hospital systems – including OhioHealth and Nationwide Children’s – in announcing it would make vaccination of its employees mandatory. Wexner Medical Center has set an Oct. 15 deadline for staff to either receive a first dose of the vaccine or provide an approved exemption.

A statement from Wexner Medical Center CEO Dr Hal Paz noted that more than 72% of its 27,000 employees were already vaccinated.

It was not known how many Ohio state nurses might not be vaccinated.

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