The Controversial Reason General Hospital Is Losing Another Cast Member

It was just two weeks ago when the news broke that Ingo Rademacher would be leaving "General Hospital" and the role of Jasper 'Jax' Jacks, with the actor's last airdate being November 22, 2021. On that day, all Jax did was tell Carly Corinthos (Laura Wright) that he was leaving the fictional New York town of Port Charles and returning to his native Australia.

Rademacher left the soap amidst controversy after he posted a transphobic meme misgendering Assistant Health Secretary Rachel Levine as a "dude." He offended co-star Cassandra James, a transgender actress who plays transgender character Terry Randolph, but that meme did not cause his exit. Instead, he was let go because he refused to comply with ABC/Disney's vaccine mandate, as Disney owns ABC, the network that airs "General Hospital" (via People). Now, another longtime player has confirmed he is also off the show, with his last air date already occurring on November 19.

Steve Burton is off General Hospital for the same reason as Ingo Rademacher

After weeks of rumors that he would be leaving "General Hospital" along with Ingo Rademacher, Steve Burton finally took to Instagram on November 23, 2021, to confirm he is indeed off the soap and yes, it is because he chose not to get vaccinated against COVID-19, so Disney chose not to keep him employed.

Burton, who has been playing Jason Morgan off and on since 1992, with his latest comeback occurring in 2018, explained that he had applied for medical and religious exemptions to the vaccine, but that Disney denied them both.

"I wanted you to hear it from me," Burton said in his Instagram video. "This is also about personal freedom. I don't think anyone should lose their livelihood over this."

Burton also expressed his gratitude for all his years on "GH" and hoped he could one day return, but not if he had to get vaccinated. "I'll always be grateful for my time at 'General Hospital.' Maybe one day if these mandates are lifted I can return and finish my career as Jason Morgan. That would be an honor."

Steve Burton claimed he caught COVID-19 at work

Back in August of 2021, Steve Burton posted a Facebook video in which he told fans he had to cancel a personal appearance because he had just tested positive for COVID-19 and claimed he caught the virus at work. At the time, he said he was asymptomatic and felt perfectly fine. He said he tested out of an abundance of safety before making the personal appearance but gave no indication that he wasn't vaccinated.

Since Burton refused to comply with Disney's vaccine mandate, Jason Morgan is now presumed dead after the tunnels on Cassadine Island collapsed and he was buried in the rubble with no signs of life found. While Burton said in his Instagram video that he was not sure when his last airdate was, Jason's dangerous and dramatic tunnel burial took place on November 19 (via and the hitman character has not been seen again since that dramatic moment.