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Empolyment without Hepatitis B Vaccine

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Are you able to be employeed as an RN without being vaccinated for Hepatitis B?

My Son will be applying to colleges next year and has his mind made up to be a Nurse.

His mom is a RN and I am a Paramedic. He is very passionate about helping others.

He volunteers as a Special olympics basketball coach as well as a summer camp counselor for special needs children.

I do believe he will be well suited for this profession.

The issue is that my family has a long-standing and medically well documented history of autoimmune responses to the Hepatitis B vaccine.

We have a statement from two seperate Physcians who stated that he should absolutely not receive the Hepatitis B vacccine.

He has been vaccinated for everything else. All the childhood vaccinations as well as the flu and meningitis.

We certainly understand the risks of working in healthcare without being immune to Hepatitis B.

His desire is to be a Cardiac Rehab nurse which will come with certainly a lower risk exposure to blood born pathogens.

Although we have found out there are a few Universities that he can't attend without the Hepatitis B vaccination....We have found multiple universities that he can attend with the signing of a declination form and his medical documentation.

A quick search online showed that only Alaska required all healthcare workers be vaccinated for Hep. B. There were a few other states that required it just for Dialysis Nurses.

I would suspect that he will run into a few employment doors that are closed by being not vaccinated for Hep. B.....

But do you feel that he will be able to find employement in most locations without being vaccinated for Hep. B by being willing to sign a waiver?

Thank you so much in advance.

Orion81RN

Has 7 years experience.

I'm in Illinois and have for the most part just had to sign a waiver. There was only one place that required me to show documentation that Ive had the vaccine.

KatieMI, BSN, MSN, RN

Specializes in ICU, LTACH, Internal Medicine. Has 7 years experience.

You do not have to sign "declination waiver" or anything else if you have medically justified contraindications to a vaccine.

Everything you need is well - written doctor's note, preferably a specialist, clearly stating that your son has medical contraindication(s) to the vaccine. Then he can apply anywhere and see where things go.

KelRN215, BSN, RN

Specializes in Pedi. Has 10 years experience.

I think he has a valid reason not to get this vaccine and most occupational health departments would accept this.

The first thing your son needs to do is make sure he has bulletproof documentation from his doctors, which you sound like you guys have. Might it be possible to add a third, perhaps some sort of specialist in immunology to have the most complete case you are able to have?

You can probably be exempted by the university with a doctor's note. You'll probably be able to do the same with a future employer, although with perhaps a more thorough evaluation.

The trip line is the nursing program itself. They will have requirements more stringent than the university or a future employer because of the requirements placed on them by their clinical sites. Clinical sites offer the schools the opportunity to send students as a favor, with very stringent sets of rules and guidelines. It's a facility's worst nightmare to have a sentinel event happen involving a student. The liability is through the roof.

With that in mind, go directly to the source: the nursing school admissions director. Your son has an uphill battle that starts with the nursing program admins.

It would be best if your son does this himself, with your support rather than vice versa. He'll get a more receptive response from administrators. Also, let him have his own All Nurses account. This is a great opportunity to grow.