Nurse: 'I was fired for refusing flu shot' - page 11

by DesertRN2

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    In my schooling and at my facility, you won't be fired for not taking the flu shot. Dr notes are accepted at proof for allergies, and if there is an outbreak of flu, the people who had Dr notes will get paid for missing work. If they don't have a note, you're off work until the outbreak is over with no pay for missing hours. Firing someone over it is a bit harsh. I refused the H1N1 shot in 2010, and I'm slightly annoying that I cannot refused it in Canada now because it is mixed with the seasonal flu shot.
    Smartone86 likes this.
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    I worked for an employer who stated that I had to have the flu shot of be fired. I stated that in my opinion that was the same as forcing me to take a medication against my will which could be construed as battery. They left me alone, then the union stepped in and got a court order to stop mandatory flu vaccines. This is my body and I have a right to refuse medications, just as my patients do. If a hospital demands that I take a flu vaccine then I demand they force all patients to have a flu vaccine.
    Smartone86, Leelee2, and Anne36 like this.
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    Quote from RN691
    I worked for an employer who stated that I had to have the flu shot of be fired. I stated that in my opinion that was the same as forcing me to take a medication against my will which could be construed as battery. They left me alone, then the union stepped in and got a court order to stop mandatory flu vaccines. This is my body and I have a right to refuse medications, just as my patients do. If a hospital demands that I take a flu vaccine then I demand they force all patients to have a flu vaccine.
    You have the right to refuse a flu vaccine- by not working in healthcare. Unless a vaccine is contraindicated due to a medical issue, you are an irresponsible healthcare worker if you refuse a vaccine and you clearly have little regard for the safety of those you care for. It is absolutely nothing like being forced to take a medication. Medications affect only you. Vaccines affect those you care for. Many hospitalized patients cannot be vaccinated due to immuno-compromise, which is unfortunate because those are the patients who most need to be protected from additional illness. They depend on you to take steps that prevent you from becoming a vector. I don't think that an employer requiring a flu vaccine to be battery, although if you do refuse I do believe you should be charged with assaulting your patients since you are intentionally threatening their safety.

    The Joint Commission is looking at making flu vaccines among direct patient care staff accreditation criteria, more power to 'em.

    What is your reason for refusing?
    Last edit by MunoRN on Jun 22, '11
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    The corporation I work for just announced that seasonal flu shots are now mandatory unless you can prove a medical or religious reason for not getting it. Not just those involved in patient care, either...everyone including those at corp headquarters who never see a pt.

    I can see mandating for those who come into contact with pts...I work with neutropenic pts frequently, and for their protection (and all the other pts as well), I have no problem with requiring the vax.

    But the requirement that all employees regardless of if there is pt contact or not get it makes me uncomfortable. Especially the way the memo was phrased. I'm not going to quote it...even though tens of thousands of people work for them I'm just a little paranoid. The basic message was along the lines of "we know best, you have no options, do it or else...and how dare you all be so irresponsible as to force us to do this for you." Mention was also made of how it's our responsibility to the company since sick days cost them so much money...the same reason why they will no longer hire people who use tobacco...it just makes me uneasy that that was even an openly cited primary motivator for the policy. What other decrees will they make in the sake of promoting "a healthy workforce" at the expense of personal choice of the employee?

    Again, no issues at all with requiring it for those involved with pts, just still iffy as far as requiring it of EVERY employss.
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    Since we're no longer in flu season I realize that my comment may be a bit late. I personally have no problem with the flu vaccine being required for me to work. I also realize that some people have to be exempt, especially for severe allergies, not just "it makes me sick". My hospital last flu season made the flu shot mandatory and in the case of people who refused for WHATEVER reason, they had to wear a mask AT ALL TIMES while in the hospital, not just while in a patient room. For those of you who object to the vaccine, regardless of the reason, how would you feel about being required to wear a mask for months every time you worked? Just curious as to some responses.
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    My workplace is looking at a mandatory flu shot policy for direct care workers for next season. We are in the process of looking at how to enforce it. We think that it is a moral and ethical issue. Our patients are all older and mostly homebound or living in a facility where their only risk of exposure is from the few people they come in contact with. and their healthcare worker should certainly not be their source of exposure. We have also provided free flu shots for their immediate family members for the past several years.
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    It's funny how people say its their right to refuse flu shots and all. Before Nursing school you were required to get all the vaccine (and in a way it is forced). You dont like it done get into the profession, but then you are in it you are refusing something as simple as the flu shot.

    Everything has its benefits and risks but when the benefits out weigh the risk i believe it should be a no brainer
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    The way I see it hospitals and schools make sure youve had your vaccines and sometimes you have to get a tetanus booster or some other shots. If thats what they require just do it and keep your mouth shut. Barring allergies I dont see any reason why someone shouldnt get the vaccine other than its a self empowerment issue by saying "you cant tell me what to do". If you dont like the rules just quit believe me the hospital doesnt need you as much as you need them. Put the ego aside and do as requested otherwise be ready to face the consequences. Bottom line is its about the patients and whether the hospital is doing it for the patients safety or to cover themselves from getting sued a rule is a rule and theres no two sides to it. If you have a hard time accepting the fact that your patients health is more important than your personal feeling on an issue youre in the wrong profession.

    And no you cant sue because you wont win. The hospital is not forcing you to get a shot in the sense that they are strapping you to a chair and sticking you with a needle. They make it part of the requirements of employment and if you dont want to listen you will get fired. Just like they can tell you that you cant take care of your patients in a bikini they can tell you that you cant take care of them without the flu shot.
    grownuprosie and Laidback Al like this.
  9. 0
    Quote from MunoRN
    You have the right to refuse a flu vaccine- by not working in healthcare. Unless a vaccine is contraindicated due to a medical issue, you are an irresponsible healthcare worker if you refuse a vaccine and you clearly have little regard for the safety of those you care for. It is absolutely nothing like being forced to take a medication. Medications affect only you. Vaccines affect those you care for. Many hospitalized patients cannot be vaccinated due to immuno-compromise, which is unfortunate because those are the patients who most need to be protected from additional illness. They depend on you to take steps that prevent you from becoming a vector. I don't think that an employer requiring a flu vaccine to be battery, although if you do refuse I do believe you should be charged with assaulting your patients since you are intentionally threatening their safety.

    The Joint Commission is looking at making flu vaccines among direct patient care staff accreditation criteria, more power to 'em.

    What is your reason for refusing?

    So i guess i am still trying to grasp the logic of thinking that if you are vaccinated you will not encounter or carry a certain virus. If i am vaccinated wouldnt i still encounter and carry the virus just the same as someone who has not been vaccinated. A vaccination is just to help me create antibodies so that the virus isnt as powerfull in my own body. It has nothing to do with the patients i see... can someone help me out here? Not sure why it would threaten my patients if I had not been vaccinated?
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    Quote from JamesR
    So i guess i am still trying to grasp the logic of thinking that if you are vaccinated you will not encounter or carry a certain virus. If i am vaccinated wouldnt i still encounter and carry the virus just the same as someone who has not been vaccinated. A vaccination is just to help me create antibodies so that the virus isnt as powerfull in my own body. It has nothing to do with the patients i see... can someone help me out here? Not sure why it would threaten my patients if I had not been vaccinated?
    The logic is risk factor. Without vaccine you are more likely to contract and spread the flu where you will be sick for a week plus. Can anyone say for certain that you won't pass it on to your patients for sure? No! But simply put there's a greater risk if you're not vaccinated than if you are. Based on your philosophy why shouldn't people smoke I mean people who never smoked a day in their life still contracted lung cancer. Again the idea is risk factor and if you can't wrap your head around that logic than thinking logically isn't for you.


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