Nearly a third of staffers at Big Apple hospitals are still unvaccinated — more than nine months into the campaign to inoculate medical workers and all New Yorkers against the killer bug, state data reviewed by The Post reveals.
The figures compiled by the state Health Department also show that nearly 40 percent of hospital staff across three boroughs have either refused or have not received their COVID-19 vaccine.
The vaccination rate among hospital workers was only 61 percent for those in the Bronx, 62 percent in Brooklyn and 64 percent in Staten Island, state statistics received through July 14 found.
Just two-thirds, or 67 percent, of staffers at Queens hospitals have gotten their COVID jabs.
Even in hospital-heavy Manhattan, just 76 percent of workers were vaccinated — matching the statewide average. That means one in four medical staffers are still unvaccinated.
There are some 450,000 workers employed by hospitals in New York State, according to a 2018 SUNY study. That means more than 100,000 workers are unvaccinated.
There are no blanket state or city laws requiring medical workers to get vaccinated for viruses such as COVID, as there are for students in schools.
Public health advocates called the low rates at medical facilities that treat sick and vulnerable patients troubling, with COVID infection rates inching up for four consecutive days in New York as new variants emerge.
“It is distressing that so many health care workers are not getting vaccinated. It’s important to protect themselves, to protect their patients, and to keep the health care system running. They should be setting an example for everyone,” said state Assembly Health Committee Chairman Richard Gottfried (D-Manhattan).
A Yale University study released last week found that COVID vaccinations prevented 8,300 deaths and 44,000 hospitalizations in the city during the first six months of 2021.
The state Health Department didn’t provide a breakdown of vaccination rates by individual hospitals, as it has done for nursing homes, which The Post found also had an alarmingly low vaccination rate among staffers.
New York City Health & Hospitals — the agency that operates the Big Apple’s 11 public hospitals — said its staff vaccination rate was almost at 60 percent.
It does not require that its hospital staffers get vaccinated.
“NYC Health + Hospitals continues to offer all our employees access to the vaccine across our hospitals, community health clinics, and skilled-nursing facilities. Today, tens of thousands of our staff have been vaccinated, and that number will continue to grow as more and more employees become comfortable with vaccine,” said Health & Hospitals spokesman Christopher Miller
“We are committed to ensuring our brave health care workers have access to vaccinations when they’re ready to receive it.”
The NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital System is the only one that has publicly said it is requiring staffers to get vaccinated.
The head of the city-based hospital advocacy group applauded New York Presbyterian’s aggressive approach.
“I support NewYork-Presbyterian Hospital’s decision to make the COVID-19 vaccine mandatory for staff,” said Kenneth Raske, president of the Greater New York Hospital Association.
Raske added, “Every hospital and health care system is trying to achieve a 100% COVID-19 vaccination rate of their workers. The only question is how. Thanks to tireless efforts and strong cooperation from our brave, outstanding workforce we have achieved impressive vaccination results, but it remains less than 100%. Every institution is discussing how to achieve that goal, and some may choose to emulate the mandatory approach.”
The drug companies — Pfizer, Moderna and Johnson & Johnson — received emergency authorization to administer their COVID vaccines and hospital officials said they will order staffers to get vaccinated, when the firms get full authorization from the federal Food and Drug Administration in the coming months to distribute the vaccine.
Gov. Andrew Cuomo and the state Health Department made health care and other essential workers a top priority to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, even before elderly residents, drawing criticism.
“New York State prioritized health care workers at the very beginning of our vast and multi-pronged COVID-19 vaccination program last year because it’s critical for them to get vaccinated in order to protect themselves and the patients they care for. We continue to conduct outreach to health care workers and all New Yorkers to encourage them to get vaccinated as soon as possible,” said state Health Department spokesperson Abigail Barker.
Cuomo faces multiple state and federal probes over his handling of the COVID-19 crisis in hospitals and nursing homes — including for implementing a policy that’s been accused of leading to more than 8,700 senior deaths. He has denied wrongdoing.