Thousands of Kaiser Permanente employees suspended following vaccine mandate

Kaiser Permanente announced thousands of its employees across the country have been suspended after choosing not to get vaccinated.

The hospital reports that 2,200 of its nationwide employees have been placed on unpaid administrative leave as of October 1.

The suspensions are impacting two percent of Kaiser's entire U.S. workforce.

Company officials say those employees have until December 1 to either get vaccinated or risk losing their jobs permanently.

In August, the organization had set a target of September 30 to have all employees fully vaccinated.

It's not yet clear how many employees were affected in California. In Los Angeles County, Kaiser is the largest non-government employer.

In a statement, Kaiser Permanente said the following: When we announced our vaccination requirement on August 2, our overall employee and physician vaccination rate was 78 percent. Since then, we have made remarkable progress: More than 92 percent of our employees have been vaccinated -- and the number continues to grow. As of October 4, just over 2,200 have not responded to our vaccine requirement, and have been put on unpaid administrative leave across the country. This number is declining daily, and as employees respond they may return to work. Those not responding have until December 1, 2021, to do so, to be able to return to work. We hope none of our employees will choose to leave their jobs rather than be vaccinated, but we won't know with certainty until then. We will continue to work with this group of employees to allay concerns and educate them about the vaccines, their benefits, and risks.
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