Vaccine mandate latest hurdle in Oregon nursing shortage

PORTLAND, Ore. (AP) — As the COVID-19 pandemic continues to overwhelm Oregon’s health system — with hospital beds more than 90% full — the looming statewide vaccine mandate, which applies to healthcare workers, is the latest hurdle in a nursing shortage. In Oregon, teachers, state employees and healthcare workers are required to be fully vaccinated by Oct. 18 to keep their jobs. Monday was the final day for individuals to receive a shot to be considered fully vaccinated by the statewide deadline. Oregon’s hospital staffing issue has been significantly exacerbated during the pandemic. On Thursday, officials from the Oregon Nurses Association said 60% of nurses at the state’s largest hospital indicated that they are considering leaving the profession.