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Kirchberg hospital in labour conflict over CovidCheck
Covid rules

Kirchberg hospital in labour conflict over CovidCheck

by Heledd PRITCHARD 2 min. 03.11.2021 From our online archive
‘We cannot allow someone who doesn’t do the Check to enter the hospital’
The hospital in Kirchberg
The hospital in Kirchberg
Photo credit: Guy Jallay

The Kirchberg hospital is in a labour conflict with a member of staff, it said on Wednesday, after broadcaster RTL reported a healthcare worker was dismissed for refusing to comply with the CovidCheck system.

Since June, anyone entering the hospital has to show proof that they have sufficient protection against Covid-19 through signing up to the CovidCheck system, the hospital told the news website. The system contains a QR code showing whether people are vaccinated, have recently tested negative for the deadly virus or have recovered from the disease.

But "one staff member refuses and does not want to abide," RTL quoted the hospital as saying on Wednesday. “We cannot allow someone who doesn’t do the Check to enter the hospital,” a spokesman for the Hôpitaux Robert Schuman group was quoted as saying by RTL.

The employee had not been at work since June, RTL said. 

A spokesperson at the hospital confirmed that it was involved in a "labour law procedure and in a process of protecting our patients, employees and doctors, all this while respecting the legal prerogatives."

Under Luxembourg’s latest Covid rules, employers are allowed to check if their staff is protected against the virus and can withhold salaries, turn staff away or dismiss them if they refuse to comply. 

Just days before the new rule came into force on Monday, the country administered nearly 4,000 more doses of Covid-19 vaccines. Over the long weekend, five people died of the virus.

But while employers have the power to demand workers to show if they are vaccinated, many companies are hesitant to force the checks on staff, saying they are mired in legal doubts. Luxembourg’s data protection regulator has said the CovidCheck system might violate EU wide rules because it does not regulate how employees should handle the medical data staff discloses to them.

Around 63% of Luxembourg residents are fully vaccinated, compared to 66% in Germany, 68% in France and 74% in Belgium, according to data published on the Oxford University's Our World in Data website.

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