Mayo Clinic fires 700 workers as part of vaccine mandate

Mayo Clinic has fired hundreds of employees for not receiving a COVID-19 vaccine.

The Rochester-based health system has confirmed it has fired more than 700 employees – roughly 1% of a total 73,000 – across all of Mayo Clinic locations.

Mayo Clinic instituted a company-wide Jan. 3, 2022, deadline to receive at least one dose of a COVID-19 vaccine, and not being overdue for a second dose, for the Moderna and Pfizer versions. Only medical or religious exemptions were allowed, the majority of which were approved.

"This is a time when Mayo Clinic must stand firmly behind the evidence supporting the efficacy and safety of COVID-19 vaccines to help protect the health and safety of our patients, workforce, visitors, and communities… Based on science and data, it's clear that vaccination keeps people out of the hospital and saves lives," the clinic said in a statement.

Individuals released from employment can choose to get vaccinated at a later date and apply to return to Mayo Clinic for future job openings, according to the clinic.

Mayo Clinic is Minnesota's largest employer, and also operates hospitals and clinics in Arizona, Florida, Iowa, and Wisconsin.

Minnesota-based Allina Health and Sanford Health have also reported layoffs due to vaccination status.

The U.S. Supreme Court is scheduled to hear arguments over the Biden administration's vaccine mandates at health care facilities and for all employers with 100 or more workers.