Discovery: Rights of unvaccinated employees will be protected


Johannesburg – Discovery Health has reiterated its assurance that the rights of employees who cannot be vaccinated will not be violated.

The healthcare and financial services giant recently announced its plan to make coronavirus vaccination mandatory for staff beginning from next year.

More than 14,000 Discovery Health clients have died from Covid-19 related illnesses.

On a webinar on “the impact of compulsory vaccination on small businesses” on Thursday night, the company’s Chief Commercial Officer Doctor Ron Whelan explained that vaccinations remained a safe and effective method in the fight against Covid-19.

“We’ve got a strong social and moral obligation to not only protect our employees but also to protect all those people that come into our different sites. So that includes suppliers and includes tenants across offices, and obviously it includes employees. It includes visitors and customers.”

Attorney Abdul Buckus said small businesses must perform a risk assessment to see how they would safely accommodate employees in the workplace.

“To decide if it is necessary for them to either accommodate employees or for employees to then go out and be vaccinated. But what must be borne in mind is that the legislation specifies that the rights in terms of the Constitution should also be considered as well as collective agreements,” said Buckus.

He also stressed that vaccinations are voluntary, and employers should not coerce their staff to take the jabs. Globally, more than six billion coronavirus vaccines have been administered so far.


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