Lancet - Time to mandate influenza vaccination in health-care workers

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    the lancet, volume 378, issue 9788, pages 310 - 311, 23 july 2011

    time to mandate influenza vaccination in health-care workers

    why is it that health-care workers around the world prove so hard to vaccinate against influenza or other communicable diseases? rates of influenza vaccination in health-care workers have averaged well under 50% for the past decade in many hospitals and long-term care facilities in the usa and in other nations. what should be done about this dismal state of affairs? will redoubling efforts at voluntary vaccination work? . . .

    vaccination is a duty that one assumes in becoming a health-care provider. mandating vaccination is consistent with professional ethics, benefits many, including some of whom must rely on health-care workers to protect them, maintains a stable workforce, and sets an example that permits honest engagement with others working in hospital settings and with the general public in educating them to do the right thing about vaccination. the fact that vaccination against influenza works is important in discussing mandates. the moral case for mandates when integrated with this fact can command the support of health-care workers. it is time to acknowledge professional duty and make influenza vaccination of health-care workers a mandatory obligation.
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