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Phoenix Children's Hospital to require COVID-19 vaccines for all employees

All PCH employees will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct. 1, a statement from the hospital read.
Credit: AP
Phoenix Children's Hospital joins buildings and structures around the state will be lit blue as a symbol of support for Arizona's frontline medical workers and emergency responders battling the coronavirus, including statements of support in English and Spanish in the windows at the hospital Wednesday, April 15, 2020, in Phoenix. (AP Photo/Ross D. Franklin)

PHOENIX — Phoenix Children's Hospital just announced a big update affecting its staff and the fight against the coronavirus. Starting Oct. 1, all PCH employees must be vaccinated against COVID-19, according to a statement from the hospital.

The news comes on the heels of rising COVID cases in Arizona. Banner Health and HonorHealth, other hospital employers in the state, recently announced similar requirements in an effort to help slow down the spread of the coronavirus in the community.

"Phoenix Children’s is proud that a majority of our staff is already fully vaccinated, and we will support remaining employees with becoming vaccinated ahead of the deadline," officials said in a statement.

On July 30, the Arizona Department of Health Services announced 1,965 new coronavirus cases were reported.

RELATED: Several Arizona cities to reinstate mask mandates as COVID-19 cases rise

Here's a full statement from PCH on the decision to require COVID-19 vaccinations for employees:

As an organization dedicated to providing hope, healing and the best healthcare for children and their families, it’s essential that we create the safest environment possible for the children we are privileged to serve. Leading health authorities have consistently recommended that healthcare facilities have more stringent COVID precautions than other organizations. We have been closely monitoring the spread of COVID-19 in our community and evaluating our policies designed to keep patients, families and staff safe. As a result, all staff will be required to be vaccinated against COVID-19 by Friday, Oct. 1, 2021. Phoenix Children’s is proud that a majority of our staff is already fully vaccinated, and we will support remaining employees with becoming vaccinated ahead of the deadline.

This is a developing story. We will continue to add more information as updates become available.

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