Sept. 10 (Reuters) - 3M Co, the biggest U.S.
producer of N95 masks, and German genetic testing specialist
Qiagen said separately on Friday that they will comply
with the Biden administration's new COVID-19 vaccination and
testing mandate for workplaces.
"We strongly support all initiatives aiming to increase
vaccination rates especially at the workplace," Qiagen told
Reuters in an email.
Qiagen said it had already updated its policies to make
vaccination compulsory for certain employee groups at its U.S.
3M, the diversified manufacturer which makes everything from
Post-It notes and adhesives to industrial sandpaper, said it
will comply with the mandate while also adding that it was
strongly encouraging its employees to get vaccinated.
U.S. President Joe Biden on Thursday announced policies
requiring most federal employees to get COVID-19 vaccinations
and pushing large and small private employers to have their
workers inoculated or tested weekly.
The White House said it will spend nearly $2 billion on 280
million rapid COVID-19 tests to support the drive.
Abbott Laboratories, one of the largest U.S.
manufacturers of rapid COVID-19 tests, said it was quickly
working to scale up manufacturing of its two tests - BinaxNOW
and ID NOW test kits - including hiring additional employees.
Increased capacity will ensure availability of tens of
millions more tests in the coming weeks and months, the medical
device maker said.
The new vaccination mandate could apply to as many as 100
million Americans - close to two-thirds of the country's
workforce - and amount to Biden's strongest push yet for
Southwest Airlines Co, which has more than 54,000
employees, said it was prepared to move toward compliance with
"We continue to strongly encourage our Employees to seek and
obtain vaccination, and to share their vaccination status with
us," the company said.
(Reporting by Mrinalika Roy, Sanjana Shivdas in Bengaluru;
Additional reporting by Shubham Kalia; Editing by Shinjini
Ganguli and Shailesh Kuber)