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With confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the rise in the United States, Cigna has established new requirements to help protect its workforce. Employees who work remotely must be fully vaccinated before entering any U.S. worksite, beginning September 7.
With confirmed cases of COVID-19 on the rise in the United States, Cigna has established new requirements to help protect its workforce. Employees who work remotely must be fully vaccinated before entering any U.S. worksite, beginning September 7, according to a release.
Employees whose roles can only be performed onsite, such as medical care providers, pharmacists, pharmacy home delivery specialists, and others, must be fully vaccinated or receive two negative COVID-19 tests per week, beginning October 18, before entering their worksite. This policy aligns with the company's belief that vaccinations are the best protection against contracting and spreading COVID-19, and its longstanding commitment to the health and well-being of its employees, their families and the communities where they live and work, the release said.
"It's clear we need to do more to stop the ongoing spread of COVID-19, and unlike many aspects of the pandemic, keeping our worksites as safe as possible is something we can control," said Dr. Steve Miller, Chief Clinical Officer of Cigna Corporation. "Reducing the risk of exposure to COVID-19 not only protects our workforce and ensures we can continue to meet the needs of our customers and clients, it also helps protect our children and community members who cannot receive the vaccine for health reasons."
From the onset of the pandemic, the company rapidly responded to the needs of its workforce. More than 90% of employees have been enabled to work from home. This not only helped keep them safe, but also provided them the flexibility to adapt to the myriad of personal challenges caused by COVID-19. The company also provided all employees 10 days of emergency time off, which enabled them to stay home when ill, quarantine if needed, provide care to others and get vaccinated. Although the company intends to reopen offices throughout the fall, employees who can work from home will continue to have the option to do so.
Employees in the U.S. who must work onsite have continued to do so throughout the pandemic with safety measures in place, guided by internal clinical experts and based on CDC recommendations. The vaccination requirement will provide these individuals with an extra layer of safety and protection against COVID-19 while onsite.
To encourage employee vaccinations, Cigna announced earlier this year that those who become fully vaccinated against COVID-19 are eligible to receive a $200 incentive award. In addition, the company has held vaccination clinics throughout the country to make it simpler for employees, their families and communities to get vaccinated.
This is the latest in a series of actions that Cigna has taken since the onset of the pandemic to protect its workforce, customers, clients and communities. Cigna was the first in its industry to waive customer cost-sharing for COVID-19 testing and continues to protect customers from surprise out-of-network bills, increase the accessibility and availability of virtual care services and create access to lower prescription costs for the uninsured.
Given the significant difference in vaccine availability and local regulations outside of the U.S., the company will issue localized guidance for international employees, the release said.