Evanston-based NorthShore University HealthSystem will require employees to be fully vaccinated against COVID-19 by Oct, 31.

In a statement issued Monday afternoon, NorthShore spokesperson Colette Urban said, “We must do all we can to keep our employees and patients safe from a resurgence of COVID-19.”

Urban said the requirement is similar to the hospital chain’s policy for employee flu shots.

“Requiring COVID-19 vaccination as a condition of employment is a critical and essential defense against this pandemic,” Urban added.

All NorthShore staff members will continue undergoing “standard daily screening questions and temperature checks,” she said.

Including Evanston, NorthShore operates six hospitals and has close to 18,000 employees.

AMITA health, which operates St. Francis Hospital in Evanston, is not mandating employee vaccines.

Spokesperson Timothy Nelson says AMITA “continues to strongly encourage voluntary vaccination for all associates.”

Jeff Hirsh joined the Evanston Now reporting team in 2020 after a 40-year award-winning career as a broadcast journalist in Cincinnati, Ohio.