Protecting patients and staff: Final milestone reached in mandatory vaccination policy

November 9th, 2021

Kitchener, ON | November 9, 2021

Aligned with the direction of our regional hospital partners, St. Mary’s General Hospital’s mandatory vaccination policy was approved by our Board and Medical Advisory Committee and came into effect September 7. It required that all staff, physicians, volunteers and contractors working at and with St. Mary’s be fully vaccinated to protect everyone. As of today, over 99% of staff are now fully vaccinated or have one dose with a signed attestation that they will get their second as soon as they become eligible. Close to 1,600 staff and close to 400 physicians have been vaccinated.

This has been a gradual process with many milestones, education and support along the way to help staff make an informed decision.

“We have a responsibility to do everything that we can to protect our patients and our staff as healthcare providers. Our collaborative approach as regional hospitals to implement our mandatory vaccination policy is about taking every step possible to keep everyone safe,” says Lee Fairclough, President, St. Mary’s General Hospital.

“This has been a gradual process since September with many milestones, education and resources to support our staff along the way. Although we had hoped that all staff would choose vaccination, it is a personal decision and respect their choice. Unfortunately, it means for those 22 staff at St. Mary’s, employment will be terminated after several months of working with them on this issue. These are valued team members and although this is not the outcome that we had hoped for, we must continue to do everything that we can to protect those we care for,” says Fairclough. In October, St. Mary’ expanded the mandatory vaccination mandate to include Care Partners in order to expand access to patients safely. As of today, everyone—physicians, staff, volunteers, contractors and Care Partners—must be vaccinated to come into St. Mary’s.

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More Information:
Dayna Giorgio

Manager, Communications
St. Mary’s General Hospital
dgiorgio@smgh.ca | 519-895-6540

Background

Located in the heart of Kitchener, Ontario, St. Mary’s is the second-largest acute care hospital in the St. Joseph’s Health System and a Regional Cardiac Care Centre. We proudly serve the residents of Waterloo, Wellington County, and extend our reach to Dufferin, Grey-Bruce and beyond.

Our nearly 2,000 staff, physicians and volunteers provide excellent, compassionate care to hundreds of thousands of patients and families every year in our core areas of clinical focus:

St. Mary’s core programs and services are provided at our main hospital site. Our community-based programs and services are offered at locations throughout Waterloo Region.

Learn more about Our Mission, Values & History and the future of care at St. Mary’s.