Supreme Court Rejects 10 States’ Challenge Of COVID-19 Vaccine Mandate For Healthcare Workers

(Photo by Anna Moneymaker/Getty Images)

Brianna Lyman News and Commentary Writer
Font Size:

The Supreme Court on Monday declined to hear a challenge from 10 states over President Joe Biden’s COVID-19 vaccine mandate for healthcare workers in facilities that receive federal funding.

The high court blocked the enforcement of a vaccine or testing mandate for large employers in January, but permitted, in a 5-4 ruling, a vaccine mandate to remain in place at healthcare facilities that receive federal funding through Medicare and Medicaid.

Missouri challenged the mandate, along with nine other states that are mostly Republican-led: Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas New Hampshire, Nebraska, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming, according to Reuters. The states argued the mandate violates the Administrative Procedure Act and is “now devastating small, rural, and community-based healthcare facilities and systems throughout the states” because of a worker shortage that arose as a result of some healthcare workers declining to receive the vaccine, according to USA Today. (RELATED: Supreme Court Sides With Biden, Against Navy SEALs Protesting Vaccine Mandate)

Coronavirus vaccine vial [Shutterstock Viacheslav Lopatin]

Coronavirus vaccine vial [Shutterstock Viacheslav Lopatin]

The St. Louis-based U.S. Court of Appeals for the 8th Circuit sided with the Biden administration, USA Today reported. The administration argued the states were using outdated information regarding staffing, and furthered the federal government can set requirements for facilities that receive federal funding, according to the outlet.

Supreme Court Justices Clarence Thomas, Samuel Alito, Neil Gorsuch and Amy Coney Barrett had dissented from the healthcare mandate decision in January, with Alito arguing he did not believe the federal government is capable of showing “that Congress has authorized the unprecedented step of compelling over 10,000,000 healthcare workers to be vaccinated on pain of being fired.”