Germany argues over vaccine mandate for health workers By GEIR MOULSON today

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FILE - An elderly person is walks in a nursing home for elders in Neu Isenburg near Frankfurt, central Germany, Tuesday, June 30, 2009. Germany's health minister Karl Lauterbach decried calls from the main opposition party to suspend the implementation of a vaccination mandate for health workers, saying that they send a dangerous signal. (AP Photo/Michael Probst, File)

Germany’s health minister on Tuesday decried calls from the main opposition party to suspend the implementation of a COVID-19 vaccination mandate for health workers, saying this would send a dangerous signal that authorities are caving to anti-vaccine protests.

Parliament in December approved the legislation that will require staff at hospitals and nursing homes to get immunized against the coronavirus, with the main center-right opposition Union bloc among those supporting it. Under the new law, those workers will need to show they are fully vaccinated or have recovered from COVID-19 by mid-March.

But in recent weeks, some local officials have complained that they lack the resources to implement it and the rules are unclear. On Monday, Bavaria’s conservative governor said he plans not to implement the requirement at least for now, citing concerns about worker shortages.