US urges hospitals to vaccinate workers for flu

Source: NVIC-Newsletter, //www.nvic.org

BL Fisher Note:

Embarrassed that many health care workers choose not to follow CDC recommendations to get flu vaccinations every year, the CDC is urging hospitals to use more draconian measures to force them to get vaccinated. The most educated of all health care professionals treating the sick, health care workers have long been reluctant to roll up their sleeves and get vaccinated. Nurses in Washington state have gone to court - successfully - to block attempts by hospitals to force them to get vaccinated or be fired. Bottom line: the right to voluntary, informed consent to vaccination should apply to all citizens - including health care workers. Everyone should have the right to weigh the benefits and risks of vaccination for themselves or their minor children and make an educated choice.

US urges hospitals to vaccinate workers for flu

"Hospitals and nursing homes should offer free flu vaccines to all their workers and make employees sign a form if they refuse to be immunized, the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention said on Thursday.

As part of a drive to vaccinate more healthcare workers the CDC also said in a statement that shots should be made available to employees day and night. (...)

Surveys show that only between 36 percent and 38 percent of health care workers get an annual flu shot, even though they have a higher-than-average risk of being infected and can pass the virus on to vulnerable patients. (...)"

Read whole article: //today.reuters.com/news/NewsArticle.aspx?type=domesticNews&storyID=uri:2006-02-09T201604Z_01_N09376061_RTRUKOC_0_US-FLU.xml REUTERS, 9. Feb, 2006

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