Hospitals illegally firing nurses for refusing flu vaccines - page 9

by AQEELSMOM 10,452 Views | 97 Comments

Apologies if this has been posted somewhere else. I'm using the mobile app and am still getting the hang of things. What are your thoughts? Hospitals illegally firing nurses for refusing flu vaccines in violation of state law,... Read More


  1. 2
    Not applicable? It's the same rationale. And yes, it is surprising that those so willing to sacrifice patient safety to make a questionable supported point about personal autonomy managed to graduate from Nursing School.

    Yes, handwashing (ie hand hygiene) is strictly monitored in many hospitals, we have people that just follow people around making sure they do this, and yes it's absolutely expected that this is done between patients, this includes everyone, not just Nurses.
    Laidback Al and elkpark like this.
  2. 0
    Quote from MunoRN
    Not applicable? It's the same rationale. And yes, it is surprising that those so willing to sacrifice patient safety to make a questionable supported point about personal autonomy managed to graduate from Nursing School.

    Yes, handwashing (ie hand hygiene) is strictly monitored in many hospitals, we have people that just follow people around making sure they do this, and yes it's absolutely expected that this is done between patients, this includes everyone, not just Nurses.

    Your first six words started off good.Your opinion. But why did it have to turn nasty with the next sentence? Quite an affront to all those kind,caring,dedicated nurses who "managed" to graduate from nursing school and have worked their b.... off,not to mention the numerous other sacrifices GIVEN in the name of their job.

    How can you discount those nurses who have been in the field-some for YEARS? The flu has been around for YEARS and so has the vaccine and I do not EVER recall a PUSH such as we are seeing THIS year for mandated vaccinations,threats,and of course that guilt inducing term "for patient safety"-really?I do not fall for that one for a minute.

    For me,the rules changed fairly quickly long AFTER I had been working for my employer.I was not a new hire coming in KNOWING upfront there was a mandate in place therefore giving me the option to look at other facilities without mandates. I believe it forced alot of long term employed nurses to have to make some hard decisions on just what they will sacrifice.

    The flu has been around for YEARS as has flu vaccines-YEARS.I'll keep my personal autonomy over personal enslavement.

    We,as ADULTS,can agree to disagree WITHOUT being rude or demeaning to each other.
  3. 2
    Quote from olddragger
    not applicable--you would have never graduated from any Nursing school with those beliefs.
    MeggieA, I'm not the one who brought up the subject of whether or not the Nursing education process weeds out those who wouldn't follow patient safety initiatives such as handwashing.

    There's more of a push every year as more and more groups that guide facility policies such as this recommend universal vaccination, but the push is nothing new by any means. You're free to make you own choices but you don't have the right to practice those choices against the policy of your employer. If I was opposed to hand hygiene, should I have the right to risk spreading infection to my patients, or would firing me seem pretty reasonable?
    Laidback Al and wooh like this.
  4. 2
    When I wash a patient's hands, I don't have to hand them a pile of paperwork listing the risks and benefits. When I give them a vaccination, I do. If for no other reason, there's a difference between handwashing and vaccination.
    uRNmyway and imjustme123 like this.
  5. 1
    Quote from BlackMurse1
    I for one think its ridiculous that so many people in this forum agree with the policy of getting terminated if you dont get the injections.
    I don't know that it's a matter of so many of us agreeing with the policy -- we're just saying that, as far as we know, healthcare employers are within their legal rights to choose to set the policy and enforce it.
    Laidback Al likes this.
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    Yawn. This debate can go on forever and not get anywhere like the last 9 pages. There is no right or wrong, but only personal opinion based on a bunch of different factors.

    The bottom line is that since nurses are a dime a dozen employers can dictate anything they wish. Unless you fight that issue the rest is irrevalent.

    Is it really worth throwing yourself on your sword for though? I would never put my ability to pay my mortgage at risk over this issue. Just take it if you have to and then find a new job at your leisure. I mean reality is sometimes in life you just have to suck it up and do stuff you do not wish to.

    Or, finally band together, and do something to limit the excess supply of nurses that allows employers to dictate this kind of stuff.
    uRNmyway, mariebailey, and elkpark like this.
  7. 0
    Quote from olddragger
    But I guess my main point with this comparison would be that washing your hands has been proven to work 100% of the time.
    Could you please cite some source that supports the statement that "washing your hands has been proven to work 100% of the time"? "Work" how? To get your hands visibly "clean"? How are you defining "clean"? Are you claiming that handwashing is guaranteed to prevent transmission of infection "100% of the time"?
  8. 0
    Wow.

    Just because I am not in favor of a mandated flu vaccination means I am willing to risk infecting a patient?
    per your post--" it is surprising that those so willing to sacrifice patient safety to make a questionable supported point about personal autonomy managed to graduate from Nursing School".
    So are you saying that if a nurse doesnt receive the flu vaccination then they shouldnt have graduated from Nursing School?
    Do you think that the flu vaccination protects you from getting the flu?
    Do you think that nurses that come to work with congestion, maybe a slight cough--or just not feeling good are willing to risk infecting their patients?
    Or what about those Nurses that do not care for patients, but work in other areas of the hospital--like in medical records, research, or telephonic nursing? Do they need the flu shot mandated also?

    If you really look this at issue you will discover mandated flu vaccinations for EVERYONE IN THE HOSPITAL has at best a limited benefit. Do you threaten nurses job/profession for something that has only a limited benefit? OSHA doesn't think so, CMS doesn't think so, and many other well respected organizations dont.

    Now lets look at handwashing --since you have focused on that comparison. Now granted, I do not know what the handwashing policies are at the facility you work in, but at our facility our policies mimics CDC's recommendations.
    Those being: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/rr/rr5116.pdf
    skip down to page 32 if you dont want to read the entire thing--its long.

    Now once you have read this if you can say that your facility mandates handwashing and monitors such consistently -then all I can say is your facility is the first one I have heard of that does that.
    I mean--do they have someone watching people all the time? Because that is what it would take.
    Now short version of the cdc recommendations--means that the length of time for proper handwashing is 40 secs to 1 minute--each and every time. Before patient contact ( even taking a blood pressure for example), after patient contact, after touching your face/hair, after touching any inanimate object, after eating, going to the bathroom etc etc. Now IF I remember correctly a study was done on a typical floor nurse handwashing requirements following these strict guildlines and it was not workable. A floor nurse that had 5 patients to care for would need to wash their hands an estimated 100-200 times a day. Thats approx 1.5-3 hrs a day of handwashing.
    I quote: 9/17) An update from GE’s Scott Gallagher: “Our research has shown that nurses may have as many as 200 opportunities for hand washing per shift. A more typical range is 100-120, and most use an alcohol-based gel that quickly sanitizes and dries while moving on to the next task. Even so, it’s not difficult to understand the challenge of washing so often every day. Our work has focused on not just changing behavior to improve compliance, but to understand what changes in workflow & processes can help reduce that number.”

    Effectivness? How about this: per cdc
    What kills influenza viruses?

    Influenza viruses can be destroyed by heat (167-212F [75-100C]). In addition, several chemical germicides, including chlorine, hydrogen peroxide, detergents (soap), iodophors (iodine-based antiseptics) and alcohols are effective against influenza viruses if used in proper concentrations for a sufficient length of time. For example, alcohol-based hand rubs can be used in the absence of soap and water for hand washing.



    I agree with the poster that said that this debate can go on forever. However, I do hope that the learning part of this debate can be of some help to others. Whether each one of us is OK with a mandated flu shot or not, is not as important to me as learning the truth behind why all of a sudden it is mandated, it's true effectiveness , and all the other precautions that also should be in place. We as Nurse have a responsibility to promote health and to be the patients advocate. How can we do that when we are not aware of the facts behind the curtain?
  9. 2
    Quote from olddragger
    Wow.

    Just because I am not in favor of a mandated flu vaccination means I am willing to risk infecting a patient?
    per your post--" it is surprising that those so willing to sacrifice patient safety to make a questionable supported point about personal autonomy managed to graduate from Nursing School".
    So are you saying that if a nurse doesnt receive the flu vaccination then they shouldnt have graduated from Nursing School?
    Do you think that the flu vaccination protects you from getting the flu?
    Yes, it's about 60% effective.
    Quote from olddragger
    Do you think that nurses that come to work with congestion, maybe a slight cough--or just not feeling good are willing to risk infecting their patients?
    By the time symptoms appear you may have been virulent for up to 3 days.

    Quote from olddragger
    Or what about those Nurses that do not care for patients, but work in other areas of the hospital--like in medical records, research, or telephonic nursing? Do they need the flu shot mandated also?
    Mandates are usually limited to "patient care" positions or those that may enter patient care areas.

    Quote from olddragger
    If you really look this at issue you will discover mandated flu vaccinations for EVERYONE IN THE HOSPITAL has at best a limited benefit. Do you threaten nurses job/profession for something that has only a limited benefit? OSHA doesn't think so, CMS doesn't think so, and many other well respected organizations dont.
    CMS does think so, they require you submit you data on influenza vaccination rates among staff, then they publish that data in HospitalCompare.


    Quote from olddragger
    Now lets look at handwashing --since you have focused on that comparison. Now granted, I do not know what the handwashing policies are at the facility you work in, but at our facility our policies mimics CDC's recommendations.
    Those being: http://www.cdc.gov/mmwr/PDF/rr/rr5116.pdf
    skip down to page 32 if you dont want to read the entire thing--its long.

    Now once you have read this if you can say that your facility mandates handwashing and monitors such consistently -then all I can say is your facility is the first one I have heard of that does that.
    I mean--do they have someone watching people all the time? Because that is what it would take.
    Now short version of the cdc recommendations--means that the length of time for proper handwashing is 40 secs to 1 minute--each and every time. Before patient contact ( even taking a blood pressure for example), after patient contact, after touching your face/hair, after touching any inanimate object, after eating, going to the bathroom etc etc. Now IF I remember correctly a study was done on a typical floor nurse handwashing requirements following these strict guildlines and it was not workable. A floor nurse that had 5 patients to care for would need to wash their hands an estimated 100-200 times a day. Thats approx 1.5-3 hrs a day of handwashing.
    I quote: 9/17) An update from GEs Scott Gallagher: Our research has shown that nurses may have as many as 200 opportunities for hand washing per shift. A more typical range is 100-120, and most use an alcohol-based gel that quickly sanitizes and dries while moving on to the next task. Even so, its not difficult to understand the challenge of washing so often every day. Our work has focused on not just changing behavior to improve compliance, but to understand what changes in workflow & processes can help reduce that number.

    This is why Handwashing is no longer the standard, Hand Hygiene is the expectation, which includes primarily gelling, which can kill viruses in 15 seconds or less. I'm a little confused by your point here, like vaccinations handwashing isn't 100% effective, that's why we use as many partially effective methods as possible. When they are all combined, that's what lowers risk the greatest.
    Laidback Al and elkpark like this.
  10. 1
    So those who don't get the flu shot are degenerates who are willing to risk the health of their patients.

    So are those who do get the flu shot but refuse to wear a mask to protect their patients from strains not covered by the shot also degenerates who are willing to risk the health of their patients?

    Because I'm protecting my patients from ALL flu strains by wearing the mask. Those who got the shot are only about 60% effective. After all, they could be virulent with flu B for days before symptoms show up. Spreading their germs to all their patients. Because they're too lazy to wear a mask. Who cares more about their patients' health?
    uRNmyway likes this.


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