Apple has apparently told its employees and stores to get the COVID-19 booster shot.
Apple stated in a memo to staff that “Due to the waning efficacy and the emergence of highly transmissible variants like Omicron, booster shots are now part of keeping up to date your COVID-19 vaccinations to protect against severe diseases,” The Verge.
The company stated that a worker in a retail store or corporate office will be eligible for a booster shot once they have completed their application. They will then have four weeks to complete the procedure. They can refuse to receive the booster if they are unable. A COVID-19 test is required before they can enter the workplace, starting February 15.
The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention has posted information that states those who have had the Pfizer BioNTech or Moderna vaccine can get a booster shot five to six months after their second shot. Those who received the single-dose Johnson & Johnson shot may be eligible for the booster shot two months later.
Apple also stated in its memo that any person who has not received the COVID-19 vaccine must submit a negative COVID-19 rapid antibody test before they can enter the workplace. Although the memo did not specify whether this applies to retail and corporate workers, it is expected that the measure will take effect on January 24.
Apple, like other companies, has adjusted its work practices during the pandemic. This includes a work-from-home policy for office staff, and changing operating hours for its global network retail stores. In the initial days of the 2020 pandemic, cases were rising rapidly in the U.S., and elsewhere, Apple closed all its stores for several weeks before slowly reopening them. The company instituted new measures for both staff and customers, including temperature checks and the request that everyone wears a mask.
Currently, Apple’s corporate employees work from home most of the time. However, its new rules apply to those who do show up at its offices.