More than 50 major health care groups have issued a joint statement calling for all health care and long-term care employers to issue a COVID-19 vaccine mandate for all employees.
CNN reports the joint statement -- which includes the American Medical Association, the American College of Physicians, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Public Health Association -- was issued in response to continued surges of COVID-19 cases nationwide.
"Our health care organizations and societies advocate that all health care and long-term care employers require their workers to receive the COVID-19 vaccine. This is the logical fulfillment of the ethical commitment of all health care workers to put patients as well as residents of long-term care facilities first and take all steps necessary to ensure their health and well-being," the joint statement issued Monday (July 26) reads via CNN.
"Because of highly contagious variants, including the Delta variant, and significant numbers of unvaccinated people, COVID-19 cases, hospitalizations and deaths are once again rising throughout the United States. Vaccination is the primary way to put the pandemic behind us and avoid the return of stringent public health measures," the statement added.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention reported a total of 14,637 new cases and a seven-day average of 51,939 during its latest update on Sunday (July 25) evening via the New York Times.
Additionally, the New York Times reports "about 97 percent of hospitalized coronavirus patients have not been vaccinated" and there is "significant case growth" in every U.S. state, but the latest surge has been driven by severe outbreaks in several states, with infection numbers remaining relatively low in the Northeast and Upper Midwest regions.
About 49% of the U.S. is fully vaccinated, but totals vary in different states. Vermont reported that 2/3 of its residents are already fully vaccinated.
Alabama and Mississippi, however, report just over 1/3 of their residents have received the first dose of any COVID-19 vaccine.