Healthcare Worker Vaccines Are Critical but Must Be Negotiated

For Immediate Release
August 4, 2021

Contact: Anne Ransone, ONA
614-975-0485 |


Columbus—ONA Economic & General Welfare Commission

The COVID-19 vaccine is the most important tool we have to protect ourselves; our families; patients and communities we serve. As the delta variant spreads and COVID-19 cases rise in unvaccinated communities, we are reminded just how unpredictable this virus is and how critical vaccinations are to preventing our hospitals from becoming overwhelmed. With ICUs once again filling up and many reaching capacity, our nurses and healthcare professionals in particular are exhausted and anxious at the prospect of another COVID-19 surge.

In order to build trust and ensure safety in the workplace, vaccines must be negotiated between employers and workers, not coerced. We believe strongly that everyone should get vaccinated unless they have a personal, medical or religious exception, and that this should be a mandatory subject of bargaining. Healthcare professionals are concerned that mandating vaccines without negotiations will only result in more people leaving the bedside at a time when staffing levels are already low following the trauma of the past year. We must work together to overcome vaccine hesitancy to safeguard our communities.  This makes vaccine advocacy more important than ever, and medical professionals must be on the front lines of correcting the rampant vaccine disinformation campaign that is costing lives.


About ONA: Formed in 1904, the Ohio Nurses Association is a powerful network of registered nurses who are committed to advancing nursing through education, political action and workplace advocacy. ONA is the leading voice of the approximately 190,000 professional registered nurses in Ohio. To become a member of the Ohio Nurses Association, visit