The Manitoba government now says approximately 85 health-care workers are on unpaid leave after refusing to be tested for COVID-19.
Under health orders that took effect Monday, many front-line workers in health care, education and child care must be fully vaccinated against or undergo testing up to three times per week.
Earlier in the day Tuesday, Shared Health reported 30 direct-care workers across the province refused rapid testing and were subsequently sent home as of Monday afternoon.
That number had grown to 85 as of Tuesday afternoon, according to the latest statement from Shared Health.
A Shared Health spokesperson said the staff are located throughout the province and represent a variety of professions.
The spokesperson said no significant issues and no known service disruptions have been reported due to the absences.
“As part of contingency planning, coverage for absent staff have come from a number of areas – including the redeployment of staff, volunteers from our COVID casual pool, staff who are willing to travel to provide support at other sites and managers,” the spokesperson told Global News in an emailed statement.
Shared Health estimates the vaccine mandate impact about 4,200 workers and, as of Friday, 1,800 were identified as requiring testing.
— with files from Rosanna Hempel and The Canadian Press