Rep. Duncan Introduces Freedom for Health Care Workers Act

Press Release

Yesterday, Congressman Jeff Duncan led over 60 Republicans in challenging the Biden Administration's COVID-19 vaccine mandate on federal healthcare workers in H.R. 497, the Freedom for Health Care Workers Act.

"No American should ever be forced to choose between the COVID shot or losing their livelihood. I led the fight against Joe Biden's authoritarian COVID shot mandate on our healthcare workers in the last Congress and will continue leading the charge until this requirement is lifted," said Congressman Jeff Duncan. "Joe Biden's vaccine mandate is unscientific, un-American, and deeply damaging to healthcare workers as we already face a nationwide staff shortage."

"Vaccine mandates did not build trust in the vaccine. These types of actions only created a dangerous level of resentment and increased public distrust toward a government acting like an authoritarian regime seizing more command and control in our lives and health care decisions. Worse, it's exacerbated the workforce shortages threatening Americans access to quality, timely care. If the Biden administration refuses to end its unscientific and harmful mandate, Congress must Act," said House Energy and Commerce Committee Chair Cathy McMorris Rodgers (R-WA)

"President Biden's reckless and dangerous federal vaccine mandate continues to impact health care workers nationwide," said Congressman Randy Weber. "This mandate has exacerbated our health care worker shortages and could cost patients' lives instead of saving them. We have made incredible strides in repealing the unconstitutional vaccine mandate, but the fight isn't over for our health care workers."

"Health care administrators in my district are struggling find enough caregivers. Unfortunately, the Biden Administration's vaccine mandate for health care workers is only worsening these hiring challenges," said Congressman Troy Balderson. "This has nothing to do with health and safety--it's about power predicated on the false assumption that government knows best. I'm proud to join Chair Rodgers and Rep. Jeff Duncan in this effort to restore individual liberty."

"As our country is facing health care workforce shortages, President Biden should be more focused on recruiting and retaining health care talent than on forcing a COVID-19 vaccine mandate on our health care heroes. President Biden's vaccine mandate makes health care workers choose between their job and a COVID-19 vaccine without considering the availability of other proven therapeutics and other variables, such as natural immunity. I'm continuing to push back against this mandate by renewing my support this Congress for the Freedom for Health Care Workers Act," said Congressman Brett Guthrie.

"President Biden's vaccine mandate was tyrannical and wrong from the start," said Congressman August Pfluger. "Unfortunately, healthcare workers are still subject to the President's mandate--further exacerbating the shortage of healthcare workers. I'm proud to join Congressman Jeff Duncan in introducing legislation to free our healthcare heroes from this unconstitutional mandate."

"85% of nurses are female, and Joe Biden's COVID-19 vax mandate for healthcare workers has forced many from the workplace," said Congressman Thomas Massie. "Many of these nurses quit nursing as a career or retired early due to Biden's mandate, while others gave up on completing their nursing degree. It's time we ended Biden's ridiculous CMS vaccine mandate and all other COVID-19 vaccine mandates."

"The CMS vaccine mandate takes a personal decision away from healthcare professionals and forces medical facilities to grapple with even greater workforce shortages, hitting rural areas particularly hard. It's time to end this overreach so healthcare workers are not forced to choose between it and losing their livelihood, and to bring higher staffing levels to increase quality and access to care," said Congressman Kelly Armstrong.

"Threatening the jobs of our healthcare workers based on vaccination status has caused a domino effect of understaffed hospitals and nursing shortages nationwide," said Congresswoman Diane Harshbarger. "It's simply un-American for the government to threaten citizen's jobs, our economy, or denying folks access to everyday life activities based on their COVID vaccination status. This authoritarian mandate has jeopardized the health of Americans and must be eliminated."

"We're already facing staffing shortages in our healthcare industry and imposing an unnecessary vaccine mandate has only exacerbated the problem," said Congresswoman Mariannette Miller-Meeks. "Instead of forcing a vaccine that hasn't been proven to stop transmission, our focus should be to offer our healthcare professionals the support they need. There is plenty of information available about the vaccine--healthcare professionals, like everyone else, should be able to make the decision of whether to get vaccinated on their own."

"Our health care workers are American Heroes -- they work around the clock to provide crucial services to Hoosiers and all Americans," said Congressman Greg Pence. "Subjecting health care workers to burdensome federal regulations is wrong, and only hurts the American public. I'm proud the Energy and Commerce Committee is standing with these essential workers, and working to revoke onerous mandates that get in the way of providing quality care to patients across the nation."

"With the CMS Vaccine Mandate, the Biden Administration has chosen to alienate Americans instead of unite them," said Congressman Michael Burgess. "The decision to receive a vaccine or not should solely be between the doctor and the patient. Those who are not comfortable should not be called out or isolated. Our nation was founded on the principle of consent of the governed - that no king or ruler should have the power to exert their will over the people unilaterally. That is the situation we are in now, and I will do everything I can to fight it."

"As the wife to a first responder, firefighter, and SWAT medic, I know firsthand how our healthcare workers dedicate their lives to keeping our communities healthy and safe. Enforcing burdensome federal regulations does nothing to improve the quality of patient care and stands in the way of those simply trying to perform their essential duties," said Congresswoman Kat Cammack. "I'm grateful to Congressman Duncan and my colleagues for making the important stand against unnecessary and ineffective mandates for our healthcare heroes."

"All Americans should have the freedom to make their own individual healthcare decisions without fear of losing their jobs," said Congressman Gus Bilirakis. "This legislation is a step toward recognizing that basic right."

"Our healthcare workers heroically sacrificed much in the wake of the COVID-19 pandemic," said Congressman Neal Dunn. "They should not be punished for making a personal medical decision. The CMS vaccine mandate put an unnecessary strain on our health care industry. It was horribly shortsighted and reduced access to care when we needed it most. Eliminating this mandate is long overdue."