Regarding the question – “Should the H1N1 Vaccine be mandatory for Healthcare Professionals
?” Yes, if your employer requires it. “Do you have a right to refuse?”
Yes, and then find another career more suitable to your nature. Comment:
The lack of scientific understanding of vaccinations demonstrated in a number of posts here at allnurses.com is disconcerting to me. I am not a health care professional, but I have taken the time to educate myself about vaccinations.
Seasonal trivalent and the current monovalent H1N1 vaccines do not contain “live” viruses. Vaccinations from “dead” viruses can not give you influenza (the flu). The only thing different about the current H1N1 monovalent vaccine compared to the previous influenza vaccines is the genetic make up of the seed strain. That is, the novel H1N1 seed strain contains a different genetic sequence than H1N1 strains used in previous vaccines. An H1N1 strain has been present in influenza vaccines for decades, although the specific strain varies. Now the novel H1N1 pandemic strain has been added to the list of H1N1 strains to be used in vaccines.
In 2007, WHO recommended replacing the previous New Caledonia strain of H1N1 with the Solomon Island strain. (1) In 2008, WHO recommended replacing the H1N1 Solomon Island with the H1N1 Brisbane strain. (2) In early to mid 2009, The FDA approved the 2009-2010 trivalent seasonal flu vaccine with last year’s H1N1 Brisbane strain. (3) Recently, WHO has recommended that the novel H1N1 pandemic strain replace last year’s Brisbane strain for Southern Hemisphere. (4) Recommendations for the 2010-2011 influenza vaccine in the Northern Hemisphere have not yet been officially announced but will most certainly include the H1N1 pandemic strain in some form. Thus, there have been changes in the strain of H1N1 in the seasonal flu vaccines over the past couple of years. I don’t recall any public complaints from HCWs when these changes in the H1N1 seed strains in the influenza vaccines took place. Why is it that today, a monovalent vaccine with the novel H1N1 pandemic strain is singled out as a dangerous and unproven vaccine? This strain is simply another H1N1 virus with a different genetic structure than previous strains used for years in vaccines. It is manufactured with the tried and true egg-based production process used for decades in the manufacture of seasonal influenza vaccines.
You can always chose to not get the H1N1 vaccination. But, whether you get the H1N1 vaccination this year or not, a novel H1N1 strain will be in the seasonal flu shot you get next year. So I guess those of you refusing to get the H1N1 vaccination now will also be refusing the seasonal influenza vaccine next year as well.
Feb 20, 2007 (CIDRAP News) – Because of changes in the influenza viruses now in circulation, the World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended changing one of the three viral strains to be used in flu vaccines in the Northern Hemisphere next fall and winter.
The WHO is recommending changing the influenza A/H1N1 strain in the vaccine for the first time since the 2000-01 season. The agency recommends a Solomon Islands strain of H1N1, replacing a New Caledonia strain. The New Caledonia strain of H1N1 had been recommended for the previous 7 years.
The other two recommended strains remain the same as last year. They are a Wisconsin strain of influenza A/H3N2 and a Malaysia strain of influenza B. The WHO had changed the H3N2 strain the past 3 years and changed the B strain last year. http://id_center.apic.org/cidrap/con...07vaccine.html
Feb 14, 2008 (CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) today reported evidence of a less-than-satisfactory match between all three components of this season's influenza vaccine and the flu strains currently making people sick.
Last week US health officials reported mismatches between the influenza A/H3N2 and influenza B components of this year's vaccine and the circulating H3N2 and B strains. Today the WHO reported that the majority of recent H1N1 virus isolates globally have not matched well with the H1N1 component of the vaccine.
As a result, the WHO today recommended replacing all three components in next year's flu vaccine for the northern hemisphere.
H1N1 is the flu subtype that has begun to show resistance to the antiviral drug oseltamivir (Tamiflu), one of the two neuraminidase inhibitors recommended for flu patients. In a separate update today, the WHO said H1N1 viruses with a resistance mutation have been found in 18 of 37 countries where the viruses have been analyzed. The mutation was observed in 14% of the isolates studied, including 8% of those in the United States.
Each February the WHO assesses the flu virus strains in circulation before picking the strains for the next northern hemisphere flu season. It takes about 6 months for vaccine manufacturers to grow the viruses in chicken eggs and formulate them into trivalent (three-strain) vaccines. Changing one or two strains is not unusual, but replacing all three is less common.
The WHO recommended the following for next season's vaccine:
- For the H1N1 component, a strain similar to A/Brisbane/59/2007, replacing A/Solomon Islands/3/2006
- For the H3N2 component, a strain similar to A/Brisbane/10/2007, replacing A/Wisconsin/67/2005
- For the B component, a strain similar to B/Florida/4/2006, replacing B/Malaysia 2506/2004
Jul 21, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – The Food and Drug Administration (FDA) yesterday announced its approval of seasonal influenza vaccines for this year, the annual step that clears the way for manufacturers to start marketing their vaccines.
Six manufacturers are making seasonal flu vaccines for the US market this year—five inactivated injectable vaccines and one live attenuated vaccine given as a nasal spray. The FDA recently sent all six companies letters approving their supplemental license applications for this year's version of the vaccine.
The seasonal vaccine targets three influenza subtypes; the specific strains are often changed from year to year as health authorities strive to keep up with the strains in circulation. This year's vaccine contains a different influenza B component than the 2008-09 vaccine. The type A/H1N1 and A/H3N2 components are the same as in last year's version. http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/con...09fda_mws.html
Sep 23, 2009 (CIDRAP News) – The World Health Organization (WHO) has recommended that seasonal influenza vaccines for use in the southern hemisphere next year contain the pandemic H1N1 virus instead of a current seasonal H1N1 strain, signaling that the pandemic strain is expected to push the older H1N1 strains aside.
The WHO also picked a new strain of influenza A/H3N2 for the 2010 Southern Hemisphere vaccine, while keeping the influenza B strain the same. The recommendation means that manufacturers will likely be changing two of the three strains used in the vaccine.
The WHO annually recommends one H1N1, one H3N2, and one B strain for use in seasonal flu vaccines, trying to match the current circulating strains. Because it takes months to grow millions of doses in eggs, the agency makes its choices for the southern hemisphere in September and those for the northern hemisphere in February.
The pandemic H1N1 was the predominant flu strain in much of the world by July of this year, the WHO's technical report on the strain recommendations notes. In a separate question-and-answer statement, the agency added, "The available data suggest that the pandemic influenza A (H1N1) viruses are becoming much more common than the current seasonal influenza A (H1N1) viruses. http://www.cidrap.umn.edu/cidrap/con...09strains.html