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UDWA News Post

New Vaccine Mandate for IHSS/WPCS Providers

What you need to know now

The state of California is making it mandatory for some IHSS/WPCS providers to be fully vaccinated for COVID-19 by November 30, 2021. The mandate is intended to protect IHSS recipients who receive care from someone outside of their family or household. The vaccine mandate does not apply to most family and/or live-in IHSS providers. If you have a non-family client who does not live with you and you have not yet been vaccinated, you should make plans to get vaccinated as soon as possible.

Though there may be changes in the future, this is what you need to know about the vaccine mandate right now:

Why does this mandate apply to me?

The mandate applies to you because you either provide care to a non-family member outside of your home or you provide care to clients in multiple households. 

Why does this mandate exist?

The mandate is intended to protect the health and well-being of IHSS recipients, some of whom may be particularly vulnerable to COVID-19

When does the mandate go into effect?

November 30th

Who is responsible for enforcing the mandate?

Your client is responsible for enforcing the mandate, which includes checking your proof-of-vaccination documentation. There is no requirement for the client to report your vaccination status to the county or state. It is best to carry your proof of vaccination with you while working, should your client request to see it. 

Will I get a violation if I don’t comply with the mandate?

No, you will not receive a violation if you fail to comply. However, your client does have the right to require you to comply as a condition of employment. 

Is it possible to get an exemption? What are the conditions?

Yes, there are exemptions for religious or medical reasons. You will have to fill out this form to receive an exemption. Note: Even if you receive an exemption from the vaccine, you are still required to get weekly COVID tests and wear a mask while providing care.

Where can I get vaccinated?

If you’re unsure where and how to get vaccinated, we recommend visiting or calling 2-1-1 to find the nearest vaccination location and make an appointment.

I don’t qualify for an exemption, but I just don’t want to get the COVID vaccine. Why should I have to do it? 

We know that the vaccine mandate can be controversial, and we sympathize with those who have reservations about getting the vaccine. However, all the COVID vaccines available right now are safe, effective, and greatly reduce your chance of contracting COVID or spreading it to others. Getting vaccinated is the single most powerful act you can do to save lives—including your own.

If you have more questions about vaccines and the vaccine mandate, call your UDW Member Benefits Center at 1-800-621-5016