OSHA Updates COVID-19 Guidance for Masking and Testing of Vaccinated Workers and Further Encourages Vaccination

OSHA recently updated its Guidance on Mitigating and Preventing the Spread of COVID-19 in the Workplace for employers in nonhealthcare settings. The updated OSHA guidance tracks the CDC’s July 27, 2021, recommendations, based upon the increased spread of the delta variant and new evidence that vaccinated persons can spread COVID-19. The updated OSHA guidance, together with the U.S. Food and Drug Administration’s August 23, 2021, approval of the first COVID-19 vaccine, may lead to increased worker vaccination mandates.

The updated guidance now provides for vaccinated workers to mask in public areas in all workplaces located in counties with substantial or high COVID-19 community transmission.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

COVID-19 Vaccine Approval Further Opens Door for Employer Mandates

On August 23, the FDA granted full approval for the Pfizer-BioNTech COVID-19 vaccine for individuals age 16 and older. Some employees who expressed vaccine hesitancy because the FDA approval was only an emergency use authorization (EUA) may have less hesitancy now. This may be a good time, through employee education, to once again encourage your employees to get vaccinated.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

As COVID Retreats, Why You Should Require Students to Get Vaccinated

We no longer wake up every day to increasing numbers of deaths, infections, and reminders about social distancing and vaccine shortages. Instead, we now read about record low numbers of infections, limited fatalities, and a domestic surplus of vaccine so large that we are now vaccinating children as young as 12 and may be exporting it by June.

And, just last week, the CDC dispensed with mask guidance for vaccinated people. This prompted President Biden to host his first “maskless” appearance of his presidency. For college leaders planning the summer and fall semesters, it’s a 180-degree turnaround that we were afraid to hope for just last year.

Yet here we are. The question now vexing colleges is how to safely reopen on-ground learning with a pandemic in retreat. It’s a nice problem to have, but it still has to be solved.

To read the full text of this article by Duane Morris partner Edward M. Cramp, please visit the University Business website.

Issues for Higher Education Institutions to Consider When Implementing a COVID-19 Vaccination Policy

As states have opened COVID-19 vaccinations to all individuals 16 and older (and are expanding to age 12 and older, based on the CDC advisory committee’s recent recommendation), institutions of higher education, like many other employers, are considering whether to encourage or possibly mandate their employees to receive a vaccination. Unlike other organizations, institutions of higher education have the added quandary of whether to encourage or mandate COVID-19 vaccinations for students in an effort to return to full in-person instruction.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

Considerations and Implications of the Proposed Temporary Waiver of COVID-19 Vaccine-Related Intellectual Property Rights

The World Trade Organization is considering a proposal, advanced by India and South Africa in October 2020, to waive intellectual property rights related to the development of the vaccines against COVID-19 for the duration of the pandemic. The Biden administration has indicated its support.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

New Jersey Expands List of Eligible Vaccine Recipients

On March 27, 2021), New Jersey Gov. Murphy announced the expansion of eligibility for vaccines to more frontline essential workers and high-risk groups in New Jersey’s COVID-19 vaccination program.

Eligible groups include individuals ages 55-64, individuals with intellectual and developmental disabilities, higher education instructors and staff, and communications and utility infrastructure workers, among others.

To read the full text of this post by Duane Morris partner Brad Molotsky, please visit the Duane Morris Project Development/Infrastructure/P3 Blog.

Vaccine Guidance Arrives for California Employers

New guidance has arrived from the California Department of Fair Employment and Housing (DFEH) for employers in California. With three approved vaccines against COVID-19 infection and a fourth undergoing clinical trials in the United States, the new DFEH guidance addresses questions relating to vaccines and the workplace. The guidance is especially timely, with some employees expressing reluctance to receive vaccinations and others hesitant to return to work fearing COVID-19 exposure.

To read the full text of this Duane Morris Alert, please visit the firm website.

CDC Issues New Guidance for Fully Vaccinate Individuals – Visiting and the Relaxing of Masks and Social Distancing

Earlier this week, March 9, 2021, the CDC issued new guidance that provides that fully vaccinated people can do the following:

1.  Visit with other fully vaccinated people indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing;

2.  Visit with unvaccinated people from a single household who are at low risk for severe COVID-19 disease indoors without wearing masks or physical distancing; and

3.  Refrain from quarantine and testing following a known exposure if asymptomatic.

For purposes of the CDC guidance, someone is considered “fully vaccinated” 2 weeks after receiving their final COVID-19 vaccine dose. For individuals who receive the Moderna or Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine, this means 2 weeks after the second dose of the vaccine.  For individuals who receive the J&J/Janssen vaccine, they will be considered “fully vaccinated” 2 weeks after they receive the first and only dose.

Duane Morris has an active team of lawyers who have been engaged in the review and dissemination of COVID related alerts, blogs and advice on various COVID related topics.  Please see our website for a list of all available articles and blogs.  

If you have any questions or thoughts, please contact Brad A. Molotsky, Sharon Caffrey, Elizabeth Mincer or any of the Duane Morris lawyers you regularly engage with.

Be well and stay safe.

COVID-19 Vaccination: Considerations for Seniors Housing Communities

More than nine months after start of the coronavirus pandemic, the beginning of the end finally appears to be within sight. Novel vaccines have shown tremendous promise in clinical trials, and the United States Food and Drug Administration (FDA) has granted Emergency Use Authorizations (EUAs) to the first two COVID-19 vaccines—one developed by a collaboration between Pfizer and BioNTech SE and the other developed by Moderna. The first Americans received initial doses of the Pfizer-BioNTech vaccine on Monday, December 14, 2020—a remarkably quick turnaround from the initial identification of the SARS-CoV-2 virus at the end of 2019 to the delivery of the first doses of a vaccine one year later.

While the efforts to bring vaccines to long-term care communities will not begin in earnest until December 21 or December 28, residents of long-term care communities in a handful of states have begun to receive COVID-19 vaccines. To that end, although companies in the seniors housing industry are likely well on their way to preparing for the upcoming vaccinations in their communities, this Special Issue Brief provides some background on the COVID-19 vaccine approvals and an overview of some of the key issues operators should make sure to consider.

To read the full text of this article by Duane Morris attorney Alison T. Rosenblum, please visit the American Seniors Housing Association website.