Why a Career at Trinity Health

COVID-19 Employee Vaccination Requirement

Effective July 8, 2021, Trinity Health will require all colleagues, clinical staff, contractors and those conducting business in our facilities to be vaccinated against COVID-19. This page is for colleagues who have not yet started work to learn more about the COVID-19 vaccine requirement for all Trinity Health colleagues.


1. Why is Trinity Health requiring COVID-19 vaccination for all colleagues?
Safety is a Core Value of Trinity Health. Nothing is more important than the safety of our patients, residents, colleagues, physicians and communities. The COVID-19 vaccine is the single most effective tool in slowing, and even stopping, the spread of COVID-19 and saving lives. Our Core Value of Safety also calls on us to do everything we can to protect ourselves, our colleagues, our patients and our communities. Unvaccinated colleagues can catch and then spread COVID-19 to patients, residents, other colleagues and their loved ones. As health care professionals, we are responsible for doing everything we can to end the pandemic and save lives in our communities.

2. It is legal to make employees get a COVID-19 vaccine? 
Yes, it is. State and federal employment laws allow employers to require vaccinations. The annual flu vaccination has been required for all Trinity Health colleagues for several years. There are a few states that do not allow companies to require employees to receive vaccinations; colleagues of Health Ministries in these states are highly encouraged to be vaccinated and should refer to local communications. 

3. Why is Trinity Health requiring the vaccination before any of the vaccines have full U.S. Food and Drug Administration (FDA) approval?
Trinity Health is requiring the vaccine now to protect our patients, residents, colleagues, physicians and communities. We are confident in the safety and efficacy of the three vaccines that have received FDA emergency use authorization in the U.S. Millions of Americans have already received the COVID-19 vaccine. 
The FDA studied data from thousands of people who participated in robust clinical trials. The vaccines are safe and effective with minimal common side effects and serious complications occurring very rarely.

4. If I’ve already had COVID-19 and have antibodies, why do I need to get vaccinated?
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) and Trinity Health recommend everyone be vaccinated regardless of whether you already had COVID-19. That’s because experts do not yet know how long you are protected from getting sick again after recovering from COVID-19. In addition, vaccination protects against the known variants to a greater extent than natural infection. Studies have shown that vaccination provides a strong boost in protection in people who have recovered from COVID-19.

5. If masks work, why do I have to get vaccinated?
Masks are an effective tool in preventing the spread of COVID-19. However, mask wearing is not consistent within our communities and requires all to wear one to have the best protection. Vaccination is much more effective. Masking is still required in all areas where health care services are delivered in accordance with 
Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services (CMS), CDC, and Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA) requirements.

6. There are cases of people getting COVID-19 after vaccination, so why should I get a vaccine that doesn’t work?
COVID-19 vaccines are extremely effective. In fact, the mRNA vaccines are some of the best vaccines ever developed with up to a 95% protection from symptomatic COVID-19 infection. These vaccines are also nearly 100% effective in preventing serious illness, hospitalization and death. And, vaccination also decreases the ability to transmit infection to another person. While rare, it is possible to get COVID-19 after vaccination.

7. I will be working remotely. Why do I need to be vaccinated?
As colleagues of a Catholic Health Ministry, we are all care givers. Even though you may work remotely, or in a department with no patient contact, you likely encounter others daily. It is important we all do everything we can to end the pandemic and save lives in our communities.

8. Will I lose my job if I do not get vaccinated?
COVID-19 vaccination is now a Ministry-wide Trinity Health employment requirement, unless prohibited by state or local regulations. You are required to provide Trinity Health with proof of COVID-19 vaccination or have an approved religious or medical exemption. It is not yet known if a COVID-19 vaccine booster will be required but if it is, you will be required to submit proof of receiving your booster vaccine (unless you have an approved exemption). Please refer to the COVID-19 vaccine policy and procedure available on your Health Ministry’s intranet for details on the ministry-wide process for unfulfilled required actions.

9. How do I submit proof of my vaccination?
You'll be required to submit your proof of COVID-19 vaccination via our HR4U colleague portal via a computer or smartphone. You will learn about HR4U when you start, the process is easy and takes just a few minutes to complete. 

Note: Follow your Health Ministry communications for additional process details

10. Can I be exempt from having to get the vaccine?
COVID-19 vaccine exemptions will be approved for a medical condition such as an allergy to a vaccine component, or in rare situations for deeply held religious beliefs. You may submit a religious or medical exemption request via the HR4U colleague portal. Exemption requests for medical reasons must include a form completed by a physician available in HR4U.Depending on the type of exemption requested, a committee comprised of HR, Mission and/or Clinical leaders at your Health Ministry or in your region will review your submission and approve or deny your request following defined criteria. The committee will consult with you and Health Ministry leadership to obtain any additional information needed to evaluate your request. An existing approved flu vaccination exemption does not apply to the COVID-19 vaccination; a separate exemption request is required. 

11. What's the deadline?
Colleagues at Trinity Health and its Health Ministries must meet a series of rolling deadlines, most locations will require colleagues to submit proof of vaccination by September 21, 2021 or earlier.

12. If I’m pregnant, do I have to get the vaccine?
As larger scale studies during early pregnancy are underway, we are allowing pregnant women to request to defer vaccination until the completion of their pregnancy. Trinity Health, the CDC and organizations like the American Colleague of Obstetrics and Gynecology recommend pregnant women be vaccinated against COVID-19 because they are at risk for more severe illness. More than 35,000 pregnant women have received the COVID-19 vaccine in their third trimester and many more have been vaccinated at other times during pregnancy, or while breastfeeding with no harmful effects. We understand that some of our colleagues who are pregnant may still have concerns. These colleagues may request to delay getting the vaccine until the completion of their pregnancy. They should use the medical exemption form in the HR4U colleague portal (HR4U.trinity-health.org) to request a deferral following this job aid. Women who are attempting to conceive may be pregnant for several weeks before they are aware of it. For that reason, we are including women who are attempting to conceive in the deferral process. This deferral process may change as more information from the CDC study becomes available.

13. I'm breastfeeding. Can I request a deferral?
No, there is no concern for women who are vaccinated while breastfeeding as the vaccine is not a live virus and does not shed in breast milk.

14. I'm trying to conceive. Can I request a deferral?
Women who are trying to get pregnant now or in the future can receive a COVID-19 vaccine. There is no evidence that vaccines cause female or male fertility problems. Women who are trying to conceive may request a vaccine deferral, as they may be pregnant for several weeks before a pregnancy is confirmed, and larger studies regarding vaccination in early pregnancy are underway. Men who are trying to conceive with their partners are required to be vaccinated and will not be eligible to request a vaccine deferral. There is no concern about vaccination effects on fertility for men or women.

15. Are all Trinity Health ministries following the same timeline?
All Trinity Health ministries will follow the same timeline for leaders and new hires. In some cases, the compliance timeline for colleagues varies slightly based on community needs.

16. Do I need to get a certain vaccine brand?
No, you can get any of the three vaccines approved for emergency use by FDA. The vaccines with FDA EUA approval are all safe and effective.

17. What does the vaccine cost?
The COVID-19 vaccine is free to all Americans. Trinity Health colleagues, including those who are insured, will pay nothing if they receive the vaccine at a Trinity Health location or elsewhere. The federal government purchased the vaccine so you and your family should not expect to pay to receive the vaccine no matter where you receive it. However, you will be asked for insurance information upon registration. If you have no insurance, you can still get the vaccine at no cost to you.

18. What if I lost my CDC vaccination card or other proof I was vaccinated?
If you received your vaccine through a health care provider and were registered for its patient portal, your vaccine record may be available through your portal account. If you were vaccinated at a retailer such as Kroger or CVS, contact them to request a copy. If not, contact your state health department for a copy. Each state maintains a vaccination information system.

19. Is the seasonal flu vaccination still required for all colleagues, too?
Yes. Trinity Health colleagues are required to submit proof of their flu vaccine or have an approved medical or religious exemption annually each fall, unless prohibited by state or local regulation.

20. Will I be allowed paid time off to get the vaccine?
Most of our work locations have vaccine clinics. We will do our best to schedule you during work hours. If you are a non-exempt colleague and need to take time off during your workday, you may be eligible for up to 4 hours of paid time. You will be expected to work with your leader to plan for your vaccine time.

21. If I experience side effects and am unable to perform my job duties, will I receive paid time off?
If you experience side effects immediately following vaccination (generally within 48 hours) and are unable to perform your job duties, you will be paid for scheduled hours missed. In general, we would expect this time not to exceed one to two scheduled shifts immediately following the vaccination.

22. How many of Trinity Health’s colleagues are vaccinated?
We believe that nearly 75% of our colleagues have already received at least one dose of the COVID-19 vaccine.

23. I'm under the age of 18. Do I need parental consent to receive the COVID-19 vaccine?
Most states require parental consent, or the permission of your parent, to be vaccinated. If you are under the age of 18, you will need your parent or guardian to complete a consent form you’ll receive in your packet before receiving the vaccine. Minors are only eligible to receive the Pfizer vaccine currently.

24. Are all Trinity Health locations requiring vaccination?
Yes, unless prohibited by state or local regulations. All Trinity Health ministries will require COVID-19 vaccination for their colleagues, clinicians, contractors and partners doing business in their facilities. Two Health Ministries have an extended timeline for enforcing the vaccination requirement. This extended timeframe for compliance does not include new hires or those in Workday who are listed as manager, director, vice president or senior officer. This additional time allows those ministries to focus on issues specific to their market.

25. Where can I learn more about the vaccine?
Refer to our COVID-19 Vaccine page and the CDC website.


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We honor the sacredness and dignity of every person.

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We stand with and serve those who are poor, especially those most vulnerable.



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We are faithful to who we say we are.

About Trinity Health

Trinity Health is one of the largest multi-institutional Catholic health care delivery systems in the nation, serving diverse communities that include more than 30 million people across 22 states. Trinity Health includes 92 hospitals, as well as 106 continuing care locations that include PACE programs, senior living facilities, and home care and hospice services. Its continuing care programs provide nearly 2 million visits annually.