Navy Surpasses 100 Separations for COVID-19 Vaccination Refusal

February 2, 2022 6:30 PM
Hospital Corpsman 3rd Class Courtney Minchew, from Ocala, Florida, assigned to the U.S. Navy’s forward-deployed aircraft carrier USS Ronald Reagan (CVN 76), administers a COVID-19 vaccination booster to a Japanese base employee on Commander, Fleet Activities Yokosuka, on Jan. 28. US Navy Photo

The Navy separated an additional 73 active-duty sailors for refusal to get vaccinated against COVID-19, bringing the total to 118.

The Navy has separated 22 active-duty sailors who were all within their first 180 days of service. An additional 96 sailors have been separated, with at least 23 of those sailors within their first six years of service, USNI News previously reported. No reserve sailors have been separated.

It is not clear if the 73 sailors separated within the past week were with the service longer than six years.

The Navy still has 8,000 sailors who are not fully vaccinated against COVID-19, despite being two months past the deadline for active-duty sailors and a month past the deadline for reservists. Those sailors do include those who in the process of getting vaccinated, have exemptions or are waiting for their waiver request to be adjudicated.

The Navy granted 10 permanent medical, 259 temporary medical and 60 administrative exemptions for active-duty sailors. The sea service gave nine temporary medical and 23 administrative waivers to reservists.

The Navy has yet to issue a religious exemption despite receiving 3,288 requests from active-duty sailors and 773 from reservists.

Heather Mongilio

Heather Mongilio

Heather Mongilio is a reporter with USNI News. She has a master’s degree in science journalism and has covered local courts, crime, health, military affairs and the Naval Academy.
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