Seasonal Flu Shot Nurses / Immunization Nurses
The main task of the seasonal flu shot nurse is administering injections of the influenza (flu) vaccine. However, safely vaccinating patients against influenza incorporates a great deal more than just the physical task of giving the shot.
According to the flu.gov website, seasonal influenza (flu) activity in the United States ordinarily peaks during the winter months of January or February, but can start as early as October and be seen as late as May. Therefore, it should not be surprising that different types of entities will require the skills and services of seasonal flu shot nurses to impart their trained effort in getting through this busy time of year as smoothly as possible.
Duties / Responsibilities
Of course, the main task of the seasonal flu shot nurse is the administration of intramuscular injections of the flu vaccine. In fact, most of the shift will involve giving IM injections repeatedly. However, vaccinating people against influenza entails much more than the physical task of giving the shot. Before administering the flu vaccine, the nurse should have thorough knowledge regarding its action, interactions, indications, contraindications, side effects and possible adverse reactions. Each patient who wants a flu shot typically needs to complete a consent form; similarly, the nurse assists with filling out this paperwork.
Seasonal flu shot nurses must employ their nursing knowledge and assessment skills to determine the suitability of giving the vaccine to each patient. They need to verify whether the patient has allergies to any constituents contained within the vaccine before giving it, and they especially want to find out if the patient has had a previous anaphylactic reaction. Flu shot nurses must be able to tell patients about the advantages and drawbacks involved with receiving the vaccine in an impartial manner. They should also be able to discuss the benefits and risks associated with one's refusal to be vaccinated against the flu.
It is imperative that seasonal flu shot nurses practice safe vaccine administration by giving the right dose via the correct route while using recommended injection sites, and through storing the vials of vaccine in the appropriate temperature range. In addition, flu shot nurses observe patients during and immediately after giving the vaccine.
Flu shot nurses normally work indoors in climate-controlled settings such as big box retail stores, major retail pharmacies, companies, , and other entities that require the temporary services of seasonal employees. The nurse might need to set up a stand or booth. Moreover, the nurse may occasionally bend, reach, and make twisting motions as part of the job.
Licensed practical nurses and registered nurses with active licensure are eligible to apply for seasonal jobs as flu shot nurses. LPNs must have earned a certificate, diploma or associate of applied science degree in practical nursing. RNs must possess a diploma, associate degree in nursing, bachelor of science degree in nursing, or master of science degree in nursing. Many flu shot companies readily hire new grads as well as retired nurses with active nursing licenses, regardless of experiential level.
Ideally, seasonal flu shot nurses should be organized, self-directed, accountable, and capable of working independently. Superb interpersonal skills and effective communication are necessary because the nurse will be interacting with numerous patients during a typical shift.
Pay rates for flu shot nurses vary due to different wage grids being offered by multiple companies that provide these seasonal positions. Some rates are as low as $18 hourly whereas a much higher wage can be achieved if the nurse obtains temporary flu shot work through an agency.
Home | CARNALast edit by Joe V on Nov 4, '16
About TheCommuter, BSN, RN Moderator
TheCommuter is a moderator of allnurses.com and has varied experiences upon which to draw for articles. She was an LPN/LVN for more than four years prior to becoming a registered nurse.
Joined: Feb '05; Posts: 38,035; Likes: 69,339
CRRN, now a case management RN; from US
11 year(s) of experience in Case mgmt., rehab, (CRRN), LTC & psychDec 11, '13For a while I was unable to find work in a hospital and did flu shots clinics... Now my patients tell me I give the best injections ever. That is a secondary benefit ;-)