By Shari Harris, Publisher
United States District Judge Matthew T. Schelp granted a Preliminary Injunction on Monday, November 29, to the CMS COVID-19 Health Care Staff Vaccination mandate for the states involved in the November 10, 2021, lawsuit to halt the mandate.
Missouri Attorney General Eric Schmitt led a coalition of ten states in filing the lawsuit, with Alaska, Arkansas, Iowa, Kansas, Nebraska, New Hampshire, North Dakota, South Dakota and Wyoming joining Missouri.
The ruling by the United States District Court, Eastern District of Missouri, says, in part, “that Defendants are preliminarily enjoined from the implementation and enforcement of 86 Fed. Reg. 61,555 (Nov. 5, 2021), the Interim Final Rule with Comment Period entitled ‘Medicare and Medicaid Programs; Omnibus COVID-19 Health Care Staff Vaccination,’ against any and all Medicare- and Medicaid-certified providers and suppliers” within the aforementioned states, “pending a trial on the merits of this action or until further order of this Court. Defendants shall immediately cease all implementation or enforcement of the Interim Final Rule with Comment Period….”
Judge Schelp explained in his order, “In conclusion, CMS mandate raises substantial questions of law and fact that must be determined, as discussed throughout this opinion. Because it is evident CMS significantly understates the burden that its mandate would impose on the ability of healthcare facilities to provide proper care, and thus, save lives, the public has an interest in maintaining the “status quo” while the merits of the case are determined.”
“This is a huge victory for healthcare workers in Missouri and across the country, including rural hospitals who were facing near certain collapse due to this mandate,” said Attorney General Schmitt. “While today’s ruling is a victory, there’s more work to be done.”
The full ruling can be seen at: https://ago.mo.gov/docs/default-source/press-releases/cms-injunction.pdf?sfvrsn=ed822d9d_2.
Lawsuits which would halt the OSHA vaccine mandates on private employers and the vaccine mandate on federal contractors have also been filed by the Missouri Attorney General’s Office and are awaiting court rulings.