A federal judge in upstate New York on Tuesday temporarily blocked the enforcement of New York's vaccine mandate for health care workers seeking a religious exemption to the requirement. 

The vaccine mandate for health care workers, who do not have the option of receiving a weekly COVID-19 test instead of receiving the shots, is set to take effect on Sept. 27. 

But Judge David Hurd sided with a group of medical professionals who are challenging the law in federal court. The state Department of Health is temporarily barred from enforcement of the mandate for those workers who are seeking the exemption on religious grounds. 

Officials in rural counties of upstate New York have raised concerns with the vaccine rule for health care workers over worries the requirement would lead to resignations of those in key jobs in health care networks.