Centene to require regular testing, masks for unvaccinated employees

Centene announced it will require regular COVID-19 testing of employees who cannot provide proof of vaccination. Workers without proof of inoculation against the coronavirus will also be required to wear face masks at all times while in the company offices.

The health insurer has delayed the first phase of its return to in-person engagement from Sept. 13 to Oct. 18 in an effort to provide more time for employees to receive vaccinations, an Aug. 5 news release said. 

Centene will require vaccination as a general condition of employment for new employees beginning Oct. 1.

"We are deeply committed to protecting our members and employees as the Delta variant continues its spread across the U.S., causing a new pandemic of the unvaccinated," Centene CEO Michael Neidorff said. "Our industry must be a leader in addressing vaccine hesitancy, especially to protect those who cannot safely receive the inoculation, such as young children and individuals with compromised immune systems. Key to this goal is a strong collaboration between the private and public sectors at the federal, state and local levels."

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