Your boss insists on employees taking flu vaccine

  1. i just heard this last week and want to know what anyone else has heard.
    the infection control person at my employer let us know that we will be expected to accept the flu vaccine for the upcoming 08-09 flu season.
    i don't plan to accept the vaccine but i was incredulous that this edict would be passed around.
    i believe we were warned that we would have to "sign a form of declination?"--never heard of such a thing.
    the justification for attempting to mandate such action was : "medicare will be lowering reimbursement for institutions that don't have a high-enough percentage of compliance."
    has anyone else heard any of this yet?
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  3. by   traumaRUs
    Well, I live in the Midwest and nope, won't do it, no way, no how.
  4. by   MeJane19
    No one can make you take the flu vaccine they can however ask you to sign a form that says you decline to take it. It's no big deal.
  5. by   ElvishDNP
    Probably the same form they have you sign if you decline HepB. No biggie. They can't force you to have it - what if eggs give you anaphylaxis?
  6. by   barbyann
    Yup, same here. Just sign the form and you are set. No pressure.

    I do get the vaccine every year. Last years was a waste of time. I got so freakin sick with the flu in Feb. I am rethinking it this year.
  7. by   MeJane19
    Quote from barbyann
    Yup, same here. Just sign the form and you are set. No pressure.

    I do get the vaccine every year. Last years was a waste of time. I got so freakin sick with the flu in Feb. I am rethinking it this year.
    I got the flu last year too. I think more people did than ever before. I think they missed a strain? or something like that. Likely as not I'll take it again this year.
  8. by   VivaLasViejas
    I'm a huge proponent of the flu vaccine, and I always strongly encourage my staff to get theirs to help protect our residents, as well as being first in line to get my own (I have asthma and now diabetes, so it's a no-brainer for me). But I'm another one who got the flu this past year, which I have to admit has shaken my faith in the vaccine somewhat.

    The last time I'd had the flu was in 1992, which was the last time I'd gone without a flu shot. My immune system is normally strong enough to fight off the squirrels in the backyard---people around me will be dropping like flies, and I sail right on through without picking up so much as the sniffles. So when I got the shot last fall and THEN came down with the flu in February, I was not a happy camper.

    I sure hope they get this year's vaccine right, because I'm still going to get the shot AND encourage my staff to have it done even if the vaccine did make a liar out of me last year!
  9. by   NRSKarenRN
    home health agency's in pa were required to initiate the recommendations last year by our qi organization along with jcaho infection control standards.

    first do no harm-protect patients by making sure all staff receive ...

    at jcaho: in january 2007, a new infection control standard of jcaho (the joint commission on accreditation of healthcare organizations) became effective that requires accredited organizations organizations to offer influenza vaccinations to staff, volunteers, and licensed independent practitioners who have close patient contact. the standard is an accreditation requirement for the critical access hospital, hospital and long term care accreditation programs. to access the standard, go to (for critical access hospitals), (for hospitals), or (for long-term care).[/quote][quote]

    [font=times,times][font=helvetica,helvetica]why is it happening?
    the short answer is because hcp influenza vaccination rates remain appallingly low, and unvaccinated hcp are infecting vulnerable patients with influenza. fewer than 45% of hcp are immunized against influenza each year, even though acip has urged annual influenza vaccination for hcp since 1981. further, influenza transmission has been documented among patients in a variety of clinical settings, and infections have been linked to unvaccinated hcp. clearly, we are doing our patients harm....

    [font=times,times]summary of cdc’s hicpac / acip recommendations
    [font=times,times]obtain a signed declination from hcp who decline influenza vaccination for reasons other than medical contraindications

    the new jcaho standard requires health care organizations to:
    • establish an annual influenza vaccination program that includes staff and licensed independent practitioners;
    • provide access to influenza vaccinations on-site;
    • educate staff and licensed independent practitioners about flu vaccine, non-vaccine control measures (such as the use [font=times,times]of appropriate precautions), and diagnosis, transmission and potential impact of influenza;
    • annually evaluate vaccination rates and reasons for non-participation in the organization’s immunization program; and
    • implement enhancements to the program to increase participation.
    health care personnel initiative to improve influenza vaccination
    ...the department of health and human services (hhs) wants to improve vaccination rates amongst hcp with the goal of reaching the healthy people 2010 objective of 60 percent vaccination rate. in 2006, vaccination rates were less than 50 percent for hcp. this objective can be achieved by partnering with other organizations to promote influenza vaccination....

    vaccine : requiring influenza vaccination for health care workers ...

    cdc: healthcare personnel – what immunizations are advised?
    presentation by dr judy schmidt

    ajn feb 08: health and safety: requiring influenza vaccination for health care workers.

    mandatory influenza immunization for health care workers--an ethical discussion. [aaohn j. 2007]

  10. by   NRSKarenRN
    I take 2 acetaminophen 30min before flushot, no aches or flu in 5 yrs either.

    22/23 my staff vaccinated and pump hand alcohol gel everywhere since multiple staff handle each homecare referral form with minimal staff sickness last winter. Hoping for a repeat this year.
  11. by   Jo Dirt
    No way will I take that vaccine.
  12. by   wooh
    I was told that next year I'll have to "go before the infectious disease board" and tell (major ID doctor) why I won't get the vaccination. Apparently this is supposed to be scary to me?
    I'll sign a form saying it was offered. But I will NOT get the vaccination. Eggs make me sick, not sure if it's an actual allergy or not, but I'm sure not going to inject myself and see if I go into anaphylaxis or even just get some hives to find out if it's an allergy or not. Which is what my old boss tried to get me to do last year to make her compliance numbers look better.
  13. by   Pat_Pat RN
    Quote from NRSKarenRN
    The short answer is because HCP influenza vaccination rates remain appallingly low, and unvaccinated HCP are infecting vulnerable patients with influenza.
    How is this being proven?

    As a side note: Maybe if employers wouldn't push employees with unreasonable sick day rules, sick employees wouldn't have to come to work with the flu and infect the patients.
    [Yes, I do have an axe to grind]
  14. by   NRSKarenRN
    those with egg allergy/sensativity can be offered nasal vacinne.

    it is perfectly acceptable to sign form declining vaccine with reason why listed. i think our form had check box.

    i have been offered and educational pamphlet on influenza and offered the influenza vacination. i am:

    declining immunization due to previous allergic reaction
    declining due to current illness
    declining due to religious objections
    declining due to personal preference.

    i am aware that i can change my mind and receive a vaccination at a later date.

    name and date

    jcaho:infection prevention and control (ic)
    home health: