Do you think health care professionals should be required to get a flu shot?


  • Mercy Employee - 10 years ago

    There is so much mis-information out there. Many of these comments are simply people restating the "talking points" as provided to management by the pharmaceutical companies and government agencies. They have far too much to gain for us to put blind trust in their "in house studies". There ARE potential severe adverse events and permanent injury IS possible. I personally am aware of patients who have developed GBS after the flu shot and it was not reported as an event because "the Dr's couldn't figure out what caused it". Perhaps the incidence is low, however if you are that person who it happens to that is not terribly reassuring.
    Please do your own research. Look at information outside of the mainstream and evaluate it for yourself. Don't discount it just because the pharmaceutical companies and the government (and therefore many doctors and health professionals) say that you just need to trust them. At the best the flu shot is 59% effective and if they "guess wrong" about which strain is going to be "the one" then it is completely ineffective! We all know many people who have gotten the flu shot and still developed the flu (or a flu like illness).
    Please look....and please respect my firmly held belief that I should not take the shot and that I should have the right to refuse a potentially harmful injection that has not been conclusively proven to have great benefit!

  • Win - 10 years ago

    No one (employer, govt., anyone) should be able to force someone to submit to a medical procedure they do not want. Make no mistake, a flu shot IS a medical procedure with risks. Furthermore, if the hospital wants to make flu shots mandatory, they should be forced to sign a contract with the employees agreeing to pay any and all medical expenses and damages ( lost wages, disability) should an employee have an adverse reaction requiring treatment. Why, you may ask do I say this? Well, vaccine makers are exempt from being sued. If you get a shot and drop dead in the floor right where you stand, the makers of that vaccine cannot be sued. You must go through VICP ( a special program not a court) set up to address vaccine injury. The money for the VICP comes from a tax levied on every vaccine sold. So, if the hospital wants to force employees to tKe the shot, they shot take responsibility for their actions.

  • A Nurse - 10 years ago

    I have been an RN for 17 years. I have always received a flu shot not only to protect myself but also my family and my patients. All nurses are required to receive certain immunizations to practice. I think the flu shot should be one of these immunizations. We are hired to protect and care for our patients. One of the ways of doing that is by not spreading flu to the patients and coworkers. And as one of the other commenters noted, this has been going on in many hospitals across the country. Those hospitals who have instituted mandatory flu shots have decreased the incidence of flu as well as decreased sick leave usage during flu season thus keeping their staff healthier. It is a killed virus and you can't 'get the flu from the shot.' We are required to be tested for TB and take the medications if we test positive. Morepeople die of flu each year than TB so why shouldn't we be taking similar precautions?

  • Cheryl Sheehy - 10 years ago

    People coming in and out of the hospital visiting could have the flu as well and have no shot. I think this is ridiculous the employee is getting into trouble for refusing to get this shot. I haven't ever gotten it. I go into hospitals, I go into schools, I go into stores. No one should EVER force someone to get a shot if they can speak for themselves. The people trying to get her to do this are out of their mind!

  • Tawny - 10 years ago

    I am a health care worker and I do take the flu shot every year. But to tell someone they HAVE to take it is like telling a worker they HAVE to take chemo if they are diagnosed with cancer. Medical treatment is up to the person receiving the treatment, NOT their employer.

  • Jaz - 10 years ago

    @ken if you are a high risk person, you should be responsible for getting the flu shot for yourself.

  • sandy - 10 years ago

    I don't think anyone should be forced to get a shot/vaccine for the flu. These patients have families that they are much more likely to contract a flu from than an experienced health care professional that takes precautions to not contract or spread any disease or virus. Are they going to require every person coming into the hospital to be vaccinated? I've only received one flu vaccine, I haven't had a cold or flu except for once in the last 12 years... the one time was the year I got the flu vaccine, I've never been so sick in my life. Being vaccinated does not guarantee that you will not contract the flu.

  • Susan Go - 10 years ago

    I had received flu shots for several years in a row and never had an adverse reaction. Two years ago I did. I developed Miller - Fischer syndrome and ended up partially paralyzed in the hospital. I am still suffering from some neurological damages. Each year the 'mix' of the flu shot is different and no one can guarantee that a patient won't suffer a reaction. Whether someone wants to take such a risk should be voluntary.

  • trey - 10 years ago

    what if you get sick then what there just trying to keep you heathy and active for the winter

  • tim - 10 years ago

    nobody in this country should ever be required to put needles into your body...period

  • Meredith - 10 years ago

    Obviously an allergy to eggs, history of guillain-barre or history of severe reactions to prior flu vaccinations would be a legitimate medical excuse to not receive the vaccine and there's no employer that could force that upon someone. That is not the point, the point is that this individual in the story does not have an excuse that's acceptable by her employer according to the policy they have set forth. Other medical facilities have been enforcing this for the last 4-5 years or so, this isn't new.

  • Rob Taylor - 10 years ago

    One thing that has not been addressed as near as I can see is the individuals that are allergic to eggs. They cannot take the flu shot and the reaction is at time severe enough to make it unrealistic to "suk it up".

  • Robert - 10 years ago

    I am a level 1 trauma hospital health care professional, and to me it's nothing short of COMMUNIST that - with our governments backing and support - our employer can simply state that forced immunization is a condition of employment. We're not talking polio vaxine here. This should be an OPTION offered to employees, not forcibly inducing unknown and (different each year) un-proven safety of these chemicals shoved into our bloodstream.

  • Jan - 10 years ago

    The benefits far outweigh the risk. I agree with you Ken. BJC implemented manadatory flu vaccinations in 2008 and increased their compliance to over 98% and a handful of employees did get terminated from what I remember. If you really love your job and what it stands for, then get the flu shot and protect the patients you serve. There shouldn't be any side effects from an inactive vaccine other than a sore arm for a day or two. Suck it up.

  • Ski2xs - 10 years ago

    Now. . . who want's to bet that this poll is indicitive of todays election. . . split between the clueless who don't understand freedom, and the enlightened that do.

  • Ken W - 10 years ago

    Elderly people, people with weakened immune systems, children are already at high risk for compounding illnesses for which they are seeking treatment. If I must weigh the added risk of one of these groups of people getting the flu versus a healthcare employee who refuses to protect patients, then I am strongly in favor of patients' rights over the individual. We make progress with immunizations and if an individual chooses not to participate, that is their right except where it poses a threat to others in a group environment. I am diabetic and thus in that higher than normal risk population. Therefore, if I go to a healthcare facility, I expect them to have already taken step to produce as sterile an environment as possible. And if you seek employment in one of these facilities, you accept the institutions standards of safety as your own. Otherwise, find another line of work.

  • Jim - 10 years ago

    Have the employee wear a mask if he/she is not gonna get a flu shot.. simple as that. he/she puts on the time they come in till the time they leave to go home..

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