Covid 19: Geneva demands vaccines or tests in health sector

The pace of vaccination in Switzerland has dropped sharply since mid-June. Keystone

Geneva will be the first Swiss canton to require workers in the health and social care sector to have a valid Covid-19 certificate or undertake regular testing.

This content was published on August 5, 2021 - 18:58

The decision was made by local authorities on Thursday and goes into effect from August 23.

It applies to the staff of public and private inpatient medical establishments, nursing homes for the elderly and disabled, home assistance organisations and senior day care centers.

A health certificate proving a person had a vaccine, recovered from Covid or are Covid free will be required to work in these settings. Otherwise, staff will have to be tested regularly.

The goal is to reduce the risk of contamination in healthcare institutions when an activity requires close contact with a patient.

The institutions will have to identify the personnel who require screening tests. They will set up an in-house testing procedure on site or externally. Testing should take place at least once a week.

Governments across the globe have been mulling the merits of making vaccination compulsory amid growing consensus that vaccines are the best way out of the pandemic.

So far, none have done so in the European Union for Covid-19. Italy recently took the exceptional step to make coronavirus vaccination mandatory for all healthcare workers after an outbreak in hospitals.

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