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Ochsner Health workers sue in Caddo, Ouachita to block vaccine mandate

Their lawsuits argue that they have a right to decide their medical treatments
Published: Oct. 6, 2021 at 3:50 PM CDT|Updated: Oct. 6, 2021 at 5:50 PM CDT

(AP/KSLA) — Some employees of Louisiana’s largest health system have asked judges to block the system’s vaccine mandate in two of its regions.

Ochsner LSU Health issued the following statement the evening of Wednesday, Oct. 6 in response to the civil lawsuits filed the previous day in state district courts in Caddo and Ouachita parishes:

Court records show 39 Ochsner Health employees signed on as plaintiffs with the petition filed Tuesday, Oct. 5 in Caddo District Court.

They say Louisiana’s Constitution and laws guarantee citizens a right to decide their medical treatments.

The lawsuits also argue that the COVID-19 vaccines don’t prevent transmission of the coronavirus.

“Defendants are attempting to force Plaintiffs to undergo vaccination for COVID-19 over their personal objections and in disregard of their uniquely well-informed understanding of the virus and treatment options,” contends the petition filed in Caddo District Court in Shreveport.

“In the best possible light, it is a misguided effort to protect the unvaccinated persons from themselves and participate in a public policy designed to increase vaccination at large. Viewed for what it is, Defendants are attempting to coerce Plaintiffs’ consent to medical treatment by threatening to punish their exercise of a fundamental right under the pretext of workplace safety.”

Ochsner has more than 32,000 employees across Louisiana and into Mississippi. The vast majority of them are fully vaccinated.

Below is the lawsuit filed Oct. 5, 2021, in Caddo District Court:

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