October 1, 2021

Our support of California’s student vaccination requirement

A statement from Kaiser Permanente chair and chief executive officer Greg A. Adams about Gov. Newsom’s vaccination mandate announcement.

By Greg A. Adams, Chair and Chief Executive Officer

After a year-and-a-half of the coronavirus controlling and taking away lives, we know that vaccination is the most powerful tool we have to stop this pandemic, to prevent more dangerous strains from developing, and to restore the freedom of safety and normalcy.

Kaiser Permanente supports California Gov. Gavin Newsom’s strong and timely action to protect students, faculty, and staff who have returned to in-person learning by requiring eligible students to be vaccinated against COVID-19 to attend schools for in-person instruction, once approved by the Food and Drug Administration, beginning in 2022. This is an important step that will protect students and school employees across the state who have returned to full, in-person instruction.

As a health care organization, Kaiser Permanente has an obligation to our 12.5 million members and patients — and to our employees, physicians, and communities — to ensure their safety and to protect them from infection.

When we announced our vaccination requirement for our employees and physicians on August 2, our overall employee vaccination rate was 78%. Since then, we have made remarkable progress. As of October 1, 92% of our employees have been vaccinated — and the number continues to grow. As part of Kaiser Permanente’s commitment to lead vaccine efforts across the country, we are calling on other organizations, big and small, to mandate vaccination for their employees, customers, constituents, and other stakeholders.

We deeply appreciate the extraordinary commitment and dedication of all Kaiser Permanente employees and physicians throughout our response to the pandemic, especially those who have been serving on the front lines to fight this deadly virus. We encourage everyone to play a role in ending the pandemic by getting the safe and effective COVID-19 vaccine.