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Military members could receive disciplinary action if they don’t receive COVID vaccine

Active duty military must get COVID-19 vaccine.
Active duty military must get COVID-19 vaccine.(WITN News)
Published: Sep. 3, 2021 at 8:25 PM CDT
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FORT HOOD, Texas (KWTX) - Top branch leaders from the Navy and Marine Corps now say sailors and marines have 90 days to get their COVID vaccine or risk disobeying a lawful order, a violation of the uniform code of military justice.

So, what does that mean for the Army?

According to the Pentagon, more than 57% of soldiers have at least one dose of the vaccine.

The Army says any soldier that does not get vaccinated is required to meet with a healthcare provider to answer their questions about the vaccine and receive one. Otherwise, it’ll be left to their commander for the proper action.

The only exception is for those who apply for medical or religious exemptions, something that Military Spouse and Texas A&M Central Texas Nursing Director Amy Mersiovsky says is very likely for the unvaccinated soldiers remaining.

“We may very well see that and then once those exemptions are filed, it’ll be up to the military to see if they’ll grant them or not,” she said.

“The biggest refusal in history was the anthrax vaccine in the late 90s, and there were people that received some discipline for that. Several soldiers actually separated because of that mandate.”

Moving forward, Mersiovsky says with the Pfizer vaccine approved by the FDA, she hopes that it will convince more soldiers to get their shot.

“The military is doing their best to educate their service members on the safety of the vaccine and to make it known that vaccination is the only way we’ll be able to stop this pandemic,” she said.

Carl R. Darnell Army Medical Center on Fort Hood will have their COVID-19 vaccine clinic closed for Labor Day weekend but will resume starting Tuesday morning.

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