“We are interested in stopping Delta in its tracks, especially in the places where the most vulnerable are at risk,” Mr. Azzopardi said.
Kathy Hochul, the state’s lieutenant governor who will succeed Mr. Cuomo on Aug. 24, was made aware of the new policy, her office confirmed, though it’s unclear whether she played a role in the decision. Ms. Hochul has said repeatedly that dealing with the pandemic and raising vaccination rates are her top priorities.
Many issues had yet to be sorted out regarding the mandate.
Stephen Hanse, the president of the New York State Health Facilities Association, which represents 450 nursing homes statewide, said it was not clear to him if the vaccination requirement would apply to home health care workers, hospice workers, dialysis center workers and other ambulatory care workers. He warned that if it did not, nursing home workers who resisted vaccination could quit and go to jobs without that requirement.
“For a vaccine mandate to be effective, it needs to include all health care providers across the continuum, so as not to exacerbate the long-term-care work force crisis that New York State is currently suffering,” Mr. Hanse said.
The governor’s office gave no details about what penalties workers face if they don’t get vaccinated.
“We are working to finalize the details, and more information will be forthcoming,” said Jill Montag, director of communications for the state Health Department.
In New York City, the mayor’s office seemed eager to be dealing with the next governor.
“New York City wholeheartedly supports vaccine requirements for health care workers,” said Bill Neidhardt, Mayor Bill de Blasio’s press secretary. “We look forward to working with incoming Governor Hochul on this and other Covid vaccination strategies.”