Healthcare students may be entering their profession not fully protected from one its deadly hazards, the hepatitis B virus (HBV).
A study examining HBV vaccination records among healthcare students at a southeast U.S. university found that 59.8% of students had documentation of complete vaccination against HBV, according to an article in the August issue of Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology. When tested for HBV antibodies, 83.8% of the students were deemed protected against HBV.
Though the percentages may appear high, they fall below the 90% goal that the CDC’s Healthy People 2010 “has set as a benchmark for the elimination of occupationally acquired hepatitis B infection in the United States,” according to the study.
Click here to read the first page citation of “Hepatitis B Vaccination Coverage and Documented Seroprotection among Matriculating Healthcare Students at an Academic Institution in the United States.” 
Check out the HBV vaccination resources on the OSHA Healthcare Advisor Tools  page, especially the Hepatitis B Employee Vaccination Form and Hepatitis B and the Healthcare Worker, a document from the Immunization Action Coalition that answers many what if questions about vaccinating, re-vaccinating, and testing of healthcare workers.
What is your experience with HBV vaccination in programs involving students in your healthcare facility? Let us know in the comment section below.
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