DAYTON, Ohio (WDTN) — Dayton Children’s Hospital has pushed back the start date of its mandatory employee COVID-19 vaccination policy.

Initially, the hospital required all staff, volunteers, students and on-site contractors to be vaccinated against the virus by October 1 but have decided to delay it until December 1.

“To allow our staff more time to complete the vaccine series, we are delaying the implementation of the COVID-19 vaccine requirement until December 1. Right now, there is an unprecedented surge in respiratory infections and RSV in young children,” a spokesperson for the hospital said in a statement. “Our staff are caring for more children with RSV than ever before, during a month when RSV levels are normally non-existent. This delay recognizes that the attention they are giving to our area’s children is paramount and grants them the extra time needed to fulfill both responsibilities.”

In its initial new release, the hospital said it decided to enforce a vaccine mandate for employees at the urging of the Children’s Hospital Association, the American Hospital Association, the American Academy of Pediatrics and the American Nurses Association. They say that the decision was made with a great deal of research, analysis and discussion, putting the safety of our children at the forefront.

Dayton Children’s isn’t the first hospital in the Miami Valley to push back the deadline for employees to get the shot. Kettering Health also announced an October 1 deadline but later pushed it back to December for similar reasons.