Up until yesterday, the answer for me was "No". It's never been a problem before..........I'd always worked where there were other nurses available to give them. Then a few days ago as I was organizing flu clinics for the residents and staff of my ALF---and I must say I'm proud that 90% of my staff complied, as opposed to 20% in past years according to my boss---it occurred to me that EVERYONE would be able to get one......except me! Even my hubby the maintenance man could come to my office and get his flu shot, instead of paying $30 at the doctor's office.
But who would give me mine? I didn't want to go to the doctor and pay $30 either, not when I had free vaccine available. I didn't want to go to the health department and fill out a ream of paperwork, pay $20, and then sit there for two hours and wait for my turn. And I sure as heck wasn't going to let any of my staff---not even the ones who are trained to give insulin injections---take a poke at my deltoid with a 1" needle!
Well, I've never heard of anyone doing this before, but as they say, necessity is the mother of invention. So I figured, hmmmm........what are the elements of a flu vaccination? I have a leg, which contains a big ol' muscle called the vastus lateralis; I have flu vaccine; I have a needle and syringe; and I have the skill to use 'em. Besides, I had nothing to lose---what am I going to do, sue myself if I make a mistake and hit a nerve?
People all over the world have to give themselves injections every day.......so I loaded up my syringe, performed the customary ablutions, waited for the alcohol to dry, and POINK!
Now I have some mild redness and soreness around the injection site, just like everybody else in the building. What's funny is, my staff and even some of the residents think that's about the coolest thing they've ever seen a nurse do........."You are one tough
chick!" my lead med aide gushed admiringly (and as a bonus, SHE decided to get a flu shot for the very first time in her life, even though she's been a healthcare worker for half a dozen years). High praise from someone who's got tattoos on every major area of her body.
Anyone else ever do this? I can't imagine there'd be any rule against it, especially when one is the ONLY licensed nurse anywhere in a facility; but it did feel kind of funny to do my own flu shot and document it in my own personnel record.
Oh well.........at least that's one less thing I've got to worry about this winter. I NEVER miss getting a flu shot, and working with the elderly as I do, I tend to think of it as a social responsibility as well. Even if it's a do-it-yourself job!
Oct 26, '06
I gave myself my own flu shot just this week. It didn't hurt at all. I gave it to myself in my right thigh. (vastus lateralis) I just went fast like I do with patients and it didn't hurt one bit. I don't think had I not tried Byetta earlier this year, giving myself SQ's, that I would have had the nerve to do it. It honestly didn't hurt a bit.
I've been doing flu shot clinics for the past two weeks and also thought "what about me?". What the heck I'll stick myself. I had one elderly come for a flu shot who was 87 years old and this was her first ever flu shot. Also a lady came in whose husband is a medical doctor. She doesn't believe in medicine. He got the flu shot, she didn't. She hasn't been to a doctor in 38 years, no pap, no breast exam, mammo, no meds no anything. Her dh just shock his head and said "I know, I know, but I can't do anything about it". I asked her if I could check her BP she said "NO". I thought my Mother was a real medical challenge but at least she does go when I drag her and does take her meds when I force her to.
Last edit by DutchgirlRN on Oct 26, '06