Thursday, 27 Jan 2022

Where Covid-19 vaccines are mandatory

WASHINGTON (REUTERS) – Governments have been making Covid-19 shots mandatory for health workers and other high-risk groups, pushed by a sharp upturn in infections caused by the Delta variant and a slowdown in vaccinations, as well as the new Omicron variant.

A growing number of countries are also making shots compulsory for public servants and other workers.

Here are some countries’ vaccine mandates, listed according to categories of people affected:

All adults

Germany plans to pass legislation in the national parliament to make vaccination mandatory from February.

Indonesia made inoculations mandatory in February, warning that anyone who refused to be vaccinated could be fined or denied social assistance or government services.

Micronesia, a small South Pacific island nation, mandated in July that its adult population be inoculated.

Tajikistan made coronavirus vaccination mandatory for citizens above 18 years in July.

Turkmenistan has made vaccination mandatory for all residents aged 18 and over.

Government employees, public and private sector workers

Canada expanded Covid-19 mandates on Dec 7 to all federally regulated workplaces. The new regulations will come into effect in early 2022.

Costa Rica in September mandated all state workers to be vaccinated.

Croatia requires from Nov 15 a digital vaccination certificate from all public sector employees and citizens who need services in public institutions.

Czech Republic announced on Dec 6 it will order Covid-19 vaccinations for police officers, soldiers and some other professions from March.

Denmark has passed a Bill allowing workplaces from Nov 26 to require a digital “corona pass” for employees.

Egypt mandated public sector employees to either be vaccinated or take a weekly coronavirus test to be allowed to work in government buildings after Nov 15.

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Fiji introduced a “no jab, no job” policy in August, with unvaccinated public servants forced to go on leave and subsequently dismissed if still unvaccinated by November.

Employees at private firms could also face fines and companies could be forced to stop operations over vaccine refusals.

Ghana will make the vaccine mandatory for targeted groups including all public sector and health workers from Jan 22.

Hungary said in October it will require employees at state institutions to be vaccinated. It had already made Covid-19 shots mandatory for healthcare workers.

Italy made Covid-19 health passes mandatory for all workers in October. The government extended mandatory vaccination to all school staff, police and the military, beginning from Dec. 15.

Latvia on Nov 12 banned lawmakers who refuse Covid-19 vaccine from voting and docked their pay. On Nov 4 it allowed businesses to fire workers who refuse to either get a vaccine or transfer to remote work.

Lebanon will require mandatory vaccination for all civil servants and workers in the education, tourism and public transport sectors as of Jan 10.

New Zealand has mandated vaccines for workers in the border, education, prison, police and defence force sectors.

Poland will require mandatory vaccination for teachers, security personnel and the uniformed services from March 1, 2022.

Russia’s capital Moscow has ordered all workers with public-facing roles to be vaccinated, while St Petersburg on Nov 9 ordered mandatory vaccination for people over 60 and those with chronic illnesses.

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Saudi Arabia in May mandated that all public and private sector workers wishing to attend a workplace get vaccinated. People must also be vaccinated in order to enter any government, private or educational establishment.

Tunisia in October mandated officials, employees and visitors to show a card proving inoculation to access public and private administrations.

Turkey began demanding negative Covid-19 tests and proof of vaccination for some sectors in August, including teachers and domestic travel employees.

Ukraine in October made vaccinations compulsory for public sector employees including teachers. The unvaccinated face restrictions on access to restaurants, sports and other public events. On Nov 11, it proposed expanding the list of occupations for compulsory Covid-19 vaccinations to cover medical personnel and municipal employees.

United States President Joe Biden on Sept 10 ordered all federal workers and contractors to be vaccinated. A mandate that private sector workers be vaccinated or tested weekly will be enforced from Jan 4. Mr Biden’s executive order requiring new contractors to have employees fully vaccinated by Jan 18 was blocked by a federal judge on Dec 7.

Health workers

Australia in late June made vaccinations mandatory for high-risk aged-care workers and employees in quarantine hotels.

Britain in October made it mandatory for care home staff in England to be vaccinated. Health workers in England will have to be inoculated by April 1.

Croatia requires a digital vaccination certificate for all health and social care workers.

Czech Republic announced on Dec 6 it will order Covid-19 vaccinations for people working in hospitals and nursing homes from March.

Finland plans to make Covid-19 vaccines mandatory for health and social care workers.

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France required all healthcare and care home workers, home aids and urgent care technicians to have had at least their first shot by Sept 15; around 3,000 workers were suspended for failing to comply. It has postponed implementing a vaccination mandate for health workers in Martinique and Guadeloupe islands to Dec 31 following protests.

Germany made Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory from March 16 for people working in hospitals, nursing homes and other medical practices.

Greece made vaccinations mandatory for nursing home staff in July and healthcare workers in September.

Lebanon will require mandatory vaccination for all workers in the health sectors as of Jan 10.

New Zealand said in October it will require teachers and workers in the health and disability sectors to be fully vaccinated.

Poland will require mandatory vaccination for healthcare workers from March 1, 2022.

Other workers

Western Australia will require all employees working in mining and in oil and gas exploration to have their first dose by Dec 1 and to be fully vaccinated by Jan 1.

China’s capital Beijing is demanding a vaccine booster shot for key workers on construction sites, including cooks, security guards and cleaning personnel.

The Philippines requires in-office workers and employees in public transportation services to get vaccinated against Covid-19 or get tested frequently from Dec 1, the president’s office said on Nov 12.

Kazakhstan has introduced mandatory vaccinations or weekly testing for people working in groups of more than 20.

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Children

Costa Rica said on Nov 6 children aged five and up must get Covid-19 vaccinations.

Lithuania is considering extending Covid-19 pass requirement to children over 12 years old from those over 16 currently, and making them unavailable to those unvaccinated.

Elderly

Czech Republic announced on Dec 6 it will order Covid-19 vaccinations for all citizens aged 60 and older from March.

Greece said on Nov 30 it will make Covid-19 vaccinations mandatory for people aged 60 and over.

Entry to public venues

Austria placed millions of people not fully vaccinated against the coronavirus in lockdown as of Nov 15. It had already banned the unvaccinated from places including restaurants, hotels, theatres and ski lifts.

Bulgaria as of Oct 21 made a Covid-19 “health pass” mandatory for people visiting public venues such as cafes, hotels, concert halls, museums and swimming pools.

Czech Republic on Oct 20 said it would require restaurants and clubs to check Covid-19 certificates showing a person’s vaccination or testing status.

Denmark requires a pass when visiting indoor bars, restaurants and other public places.

Egypt made vaccination mandatory for public university students to access campuses.

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France requires a health pass to enter restaurants, cafes, cinemas and museums, among other public venues. Booster shots will become a requirement for a valid health pass, which shows proof of full vaccination or a negative Covid-19 test.

Germany’s leaders agreed on Dec 2 to bar the unvaccinated from access to all but the most essential businesses such as grocery stores, pharmacies and bakeries.

Italy tightened curbs on Dec 6, barring the unvaccinated from accessing indoor seating at bars and restaurants, visiting museums, cinemas and clubs and attending sporting events. A basic green health pass became obligatory for all public transport.

Kenya requires its residents to show proof of Covid-19 vaccination by Dec 21 to access public services including schools, transport services, immigration and other state offices, hotels, bars, restaurants, national parks and wildlife reserves.

Lebanon limited entry to restaurants, cafes, pubs and beaches to people holding vaccine certificates or those who have taken antibody tests.

Morocco introduced a vaccine pass on Oct 21 for access to all government buildings, as well as spaces such as cafes, restaurants, cinemas, gyms and transportation.

Netherlands introduced in September a health pass showing proof of vaccination to go to bars, restaurants, clubs or cultural events.

Romania made health passes mandatory for entry to most public venues from Oct 25. It allowed entry to most non-essential public venues for those who have been vaccinated or who have recovered from the virus and for those who can present a negative Covid-19 test, from Dec 8.

Serbia as of Oct 23 made a Covid-19 health pass mandatory for people who want to visit indoor cafes, hotels and restaurants after 10 pm.

Singapore has barred unvaccinated people from entering shopping malls since mid-October.

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Switzerland requires people entering bars, restaurants and fitness centres to show a Covid-19 status certificate providing proof of vaccination, recovery from infection or a negative test result.

South Korea has asked its citizens to show vaccine passes for visiting 14 designated public spaces, including hospitality and entertainment venues.

Sweden introduced vaccine passes for indoor events with more than 100 people from Dec 1 and had said it was putting preparations in place to extend it to smaller gatherings, such as in restaurants.

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