Delta Airlines Forces Unvaccinated Employees to Pay More in Health Insurance

Delta Airlines Forces Unvaccinated Employees to Pay More in Health Insurance

( – The nation’s airline companies have taken varying approaches to COVID-19 mandates for employees. For instance, United and Frontier Airlines announced mandatory vaccinations for workers earlier this summer. However, the heads of American, Southwest, and Delta Airlines said they wouldn’t require their employees to receive them. Delta recently hit the headlines with a different controversial requirement for its workers.

On Wednesday, August 25, Delta CEO Ed Bastian shared a memorandum with employees, updating them on the company’s policies regarding vaccinations. He began by providing some background on the recent rise in COVID cases due to the B.1.617.2 (Delta) variant.

Thankfully, the company reached its milestone goal of having 75% of its employees vaccinated. However, Bastian said that wasn’t enough. Starting on November 1, all unvaccinated Delta employees enrolled in the company’s account-based healthcare plan would have to start paying a $200 monthly surcharge.

Continuing, Bastian explained the average hospital stay for coronavirus patients costs Delta Airlines about $50K per person. Therefore, it would impose the surcharge on unvaccinated employees to mitigate its financial risk because of their decision not to vaccinate. He added that 100% of Delta’s employees hospitalized for COVID-19 were not fully vaccinated.

This new policy raises the question: “Will this measure incentivize vaccinations, or will it lead to resignations which could create more workforce shortages?”

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