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Irresponsible Stunt, State Port Pilot, February 2, 2022

Your January 19 issue reports that Omicron’s surge has “overwhelmed” schools and forced Dosher Memorial Hospital to suspend its mammography and pain management services. Your editorial implores us all to help “limit the spread in our community.” Regrettably, Congressman David Rouzer refuses. He co-signed legislation to negate the Supreme Court’s ruling that the vaccine mandate for healthcare workers is constitutional. His bill would help boost COVID-19 cases at the worst possible time.

As you reported, Dosher is “scrambling to keep up with the surge”. NC’s COVID-19 caseload is setting new records daily. Novant reports that some facilities are “nearing 98 to 99 percent capacity,” with 98 percent of patients either unvaccinated or un-boosted.

In its decision, the Supreme Court said: “Healthcare workers around the country are ordinarily required to be vaccinated for diseases such as hepatitis B, influenza, and measles, mumps, and rubella,” which is why “healthcare workers and public health organizations overwhelmingly support” the vaccine mandate.

The Court observed that the mandate makes sense: “It would be the very opposite of efficient and effective administration for a facility that is supposed to make people well to make them sick with COVID–19.”

Rouzer knows it makes sense, but he also knows his bill won’t pass the Democratic-controlled house. It’s just an irresponsible stunt to score cheap political points. If he wanted to help, he’d quit playing political games and urge folks to get vaccinated.

COVID-19 is deadly enough. It doesn’t need a boost from Rouzer.

Art Hill



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