The Marine Corps has separated more than 250 Marines due to their refusal to receive the COVID-19 vaccine, the service announced Thursday.
The service separated 45 more Marines since the service’s last update on Dec. 27, bringing the total to 251.
“The Marine Corps recognizes COVID-19 as a readiness issue,” according to the service’s COVID-19 update. “The speed with which the disease transmits among individuals has increased risk to our Marines and the Marine Corps’ mission. We are confident the vaccine protects our Marines, our communities, and the Nation.”
As of Jan. 6, 96 percent of active-duty Marines are partially vaccinated, while 94 percent are fully vaccinated. In the reserves, 86 percent are partially vaccinated while 84 percent are fully vaccinated.
Approximately 88 percent of Marines who have been hospitalized due to COVID-19 throughout the pandemic were unvaccinated, according to the most recent COVID-19 update.
The Marine Corps has not approved any religious exemptions as of Thursday. There have been 3,260 requests, and 3,115 have been adjudicated. All religious exemptions are forwarded to the Manpower and Reserve Affairs Department.
The service approved 963 administrative or medical exemptions.