Sue Lysne, an ultrasound technician at St. John's Health receives her first dose of the COVID-19 vaccine in December 2020. As of December 2021, about 10% of St. John's staff is unvaccinated. Photo: Nick Sulzer // Buckrail

CHEYENNE, Wyo. — Governor Mark Gordon released comments yesterday, following the U.S Supreme Courts’ decision to block the Biden Administrations from enforcing vaccine-or-test rules on U.S businesses with over at least 100 employees.

According to a report by the Associated Press, more than 80 million people would have been affected and the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) had estimated that the rule would save 6,500 lives and prevent 250,000 hospitalizations over six months.

Gordon said, “We are delighted that the Supreme Court ruled favorably on our petition regarding OSHA’s authority. This is a victory for Wyoming businesses and their workers. The court rightfully recognized this action by the Biden Administration for what it was– a blatant example of federal overreach.

The conservative court upheld the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS) vaccine mandate that applies to most healthcare workers.

“It is disappointing that the Court did not reach a similar conclusion on the CMS vaccine mandate. I continue to maintain that healthcare workers should not be forced to choose between vaccination and termination. We are still in the process of evaluating the impacts of this ruling on Wyoming’s healthcare workforce,” Gordon said.

In early December, St. John’s Health Interim CEO Dave Robertson briefed the Teton County Board of County Commissioners on how a federal vaccine mandate for healthcare workers would affect his staff.

At that time, Robertson explained that St. John’s Health is at risk of losing about 10% of its employees, roughly 80 people if the mandate is enforced. “At this point, it won’t be insignificant,” Robertson said.

“St. John’s is currently at a 12% vacancy rate,” Robertson said back in December. “It is very possible we could see as much as a 20% vacancy rate which will dramatically impact our ability to truly accommodate all of the needs of the community.”

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Buckrail @ Lindsay

Lindsay Vallen is a Community News Reporter covering a little bit of everything; with an interest in politics, wildlife, and amplifying community voices. Originally from the east coast, Lindsay has called Wilson, Wyoming home since 2017. In her free time, she enjoys snowboarding, hiking, cooking, and completing the Jackson Hole Daily crosswords.