Can Hospital Workers Be Fired for Refusing to Vaccinate?

The first batch of COVID-19 vaccinations are already being administered to healthcare workers in hospitals and long-term-care facilities who are most at risk. But what happens if employees refuse to be vaccinated? Can they be terminated for refusal? Professor Dorit Reiss of UC Hastings Law explains employers' rights to mandate vaccination as a condition of employment, the legal and ethical concerns surrounding such mandates, and the exceptions under the Americans with Disabilities Act and the Civil Rights Act of 1964.


Dorit Reiss is Professor of Law and the James Edgar Hervey '50 Chair of Litigation at UC Hastings College of the Law.