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Southwest Airlines to vaccinate employees against COVID-19 for free

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Jan 21 (Reuters) - Southwest Airlines Co said on Thursday it would vaccinate its employees against COVID-19 for free once a vaccine has been made widely available in the United States.

The airline said its employees were strongly encouraged to get vaccinated against COVID-19.

"We have teams working to identify third parties who can provide vaccines to our employees as soon as they are able to do so – likely during later phases in the vaccine roll-out plan," the U.S. carrier said in a statement.

The vaccines are paid for by the federal government and the administrative fees will be covered for Southwest employees under its health plans, the company said.

(Reporting by Sanjana Shivdas and Ankit Ajmera in Bengaluru; Editing by Amy Caren Daniel)