Final Decision Rendered
It’s been a long journey full of ups and downs, but the highest court in the land has finally spoken. The Supreme Court of The United States (SCOTUS) on Thursday (Jan 13, 2022) delivered two landmark decisions regarding Covid-19 vaccine mandates. The first, in a 6-3 decision, was to block the “Vax or Test” Emergency Temporary Standard (ETS) proposed by the Occupational Health and Safety Administration (OSHA) to require employers with 100 or more employees to be vaccinated or undergo weekly tests.
The second decision was in regards to health care facilities who receive Medicare and Medicaid funding from the Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). In this decision, the SCOTUS upheld the rule administered by HHS in a 5-4 decision. This means, healthcare facilities who receive funding for Medicare and Medicaid will be required to have fully vaccinated staffs, while private business will not, for now.
Both rulings take effect immediately and will stay in effect until other legal challenges over the constitutionality of the mandates themselves are resolved. This decision simply addressed the narrow issue of invalidating the mandates until the courts can figure out the legalities of said mandates.
Simply put, for now the SCOTUS has put a stay on the “Vax or Test” mandate, but allowed the healthcare mandate for the time being while lower courts continue to work out the legalities. This does not mean the SCOTUS is done, it is simply waiting to hear decisions from the lower courts.
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