Letter to the editor graphic

I am an RN who was employed at Eisenhower health from Sept. 17, 2012 until recently. 

When an initial email came out at work seeking employees who would volunteer to work Covid units, I quickly accepted. Several of us volunteered not knowing what the risks would be. 

At one point, the governor said those over 65 could shelter in place at home and Eisenhower allowed this. Even though I qualified as that age group and could have "sat it out" at home while receiving pay, I stayed and worked the covid units alongside my coworkers. I have never refused to work a covid unit, even though it can be a challenging place to work. 

In mid August I received an email regarding mandatory covid vaccinations. I was informed that I had until Sep 30th to get vaccinated, and realistically, it would be more like Sept 15th. 

I was already being tested for covid twice weekly (because of my unvaccinated status) and wearing PPE per work requirements. I filed a religious exemption with Eisenhower. In late Sept, I was called into an HR meeting and told that my religious exemption was accepted, but the problem was with "accommodation". A few days later I was told that they could not accommodate me, therefore; I was being placed on unpaid suspension (unless I got vaccinated), and termination on Nov 1st (if I was not vaccinated). I was terminated as of Nov 1st. Many of the current employees at Eisenhower are unaware that this is happening.

Of note is that my covid antibody level is 141.1. This means I have had covid, and I have natural immunity to it, such as an immunity to measles if one has had it. 

I get daily texts from Eisenhower staffing (I haven't been taken off their call list yet) because they are chronically short of nurses and are paying up to $500 to get people to come in and cover the short-staffed shifts. 

I am very proud of my profession and this is a slap in the face to anyone who tirelessly worked the covid units.

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