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Houston Methodist requiring COVID-19 boosters for employees by March 1

"... we’ve taken a sacred oath to do everything possible to keep our patients safe and healthy – this includes getting a booster now," CEO Marc Boom said.
Credit: KHOU 11

HOUSTON — Houston Methodist is requiring all employees to get a COVID-19 booster by March 1, the hospital system confirmed Friday. 

In an internal memo to employees, Methodist CEO Dr. Marc Boom said the boosters are necessary to "protect our patients, ourselves and our families."

Last spring, Methodist became the first hospital system in the country to require the COVID-19 vaccine for employees and physicians. 

"Now with omicron surging and mounting evidence that a booster shot effectively protects individuals from severe illness, it is time for us to step up again," Dr. Boom said. "Vaccines are safe, and we know that boosters are the best available protection right now against this variant."

He said most employees are already boosted, but they're taking this action to ensure all of them are. 

"Like I said when we did this the first time, as health care workers we’ve taken a sacred oath to do everything possible to keep our patients safe and healthy – this includes getting a booster now," Boom's letter said. "I know we are all tired and we want our old lives back. Getting a booster is one way we can get back to normal faster. So this next step will go a long way to keeping us safe."

Some employees who refused to get vaccinated sued Methodist last year but a judge threw out the lawsuit. In June, a spokesperson said 153 employees who failed to comply with the mandate either resigned or were fired. 

The hospital system said more than 25,000 employees complied with the mandate.