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URMC says it needs more information on healthcare worker vaccine mandate after court ruling kills religious exemptions

One of the region’s largest health systems says it needs more information on the religious exemption update that came down from the courts last week.

On Friday, a judge agreed with New York State – lifting the religious exemption that was temporarily granted to healthcare workers avoiding the COVID-19 vaccine.

Officials with the University of Rochester Medical Center told News10NBC they need more guidance.


More than 20,000 URMC employees were vaccinated before September 27. That’s when the COVID vaccine mandate took place. In the days leading up to- and those that followed- dozens protested the state mandate.

Because of the court action, workers who claimed a religious exemption were able to continue working. In theory, that should not be the case anymore. However, health systems like URMC are uncertain about proceeding – since there’s expected to be more court filings.

“We continue to provide education and answer questions about the vaccines, and are hopeful the small percentage of employees currently working under a religious exemption will also choose to become vaccinated,” URMC told News10NBC.



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