Weekly poll: The Feds and healthcare worker mandatory flu shots

By: January 9th, 2012 Email This Post Print This Post

A post about Recommendations on Strategies to Achieve the Healthy People 2020 Annual Goal of 90% Influenza Vaccine Coverage for Health Care Personnel, a draft guidance calling for mandatory flu shots, has drawn an extraordinary number of comments on the OSHA Healthcare Advisor. If approved, do think the guidance will eventually lead to a nation-wide requirement for the mandatory influenza immunization of healthcare workers? Take our OSHA Healthcare Advisor Weekly Poll and let us know.

After taking the survey, click here for the results.

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By Bruce Cunha on January 10th, 2012 at 12:48 pm

I don’t think the Government will make them mandatory, at least not the Federal Government. But with the Government holding the purse strings on paying for health care, how many facilities are not going to just say. Ok, we don’t get paid if we don’t hit 90% so we will require everyone. Unfortunately, this will be about the only way we will get past 90%.

Coming from a facility that currently does not require influenza vaccination and having put in more effort than I care tto think about to educate and motivate employees to get the vaccination. I don’t see us getting much better than then current 84% we have reached over the last two flu seasons.

By David LaHoda on January 10th, 2012 at 12:57 pm

Good insight, Bruce. “Follow the money” is usually a good way to analyze or predict a situation. And of course healthcare is no exception.

I think it is selfish for healthcare providers not to get the flu vaccination. These providers are supposed to be patient advocates and first do no harm to their patients…what are they thinking? I would be ashamed to call myself a professional.

If I stood by silently, and didn’t protest when my employer forced me to either be penetrated and injected with a biological fluid or be terminated, knowing that my patients were watching me and wondering what my employer might force THEM to do, I would be ashamed to call myself a professional.
Some hospitals force their employees to receive annual flu vaccinations, even those employees who have no patient contact. Many of these same hospitals also require all vendors who supply them with products, to be vaccinated.
How long do you think it will be before they will require all VISITORS to show proof of annual vaccination before being allowed to visit patients? How long do you think it will be before there are other “mandatory” vaccines that will be required in order to set foot inside the hallowed halls of healthcare?
And what makes you think it will stop with healthcare? Certainly all food handlers, police and fire departments, and those in education, must be required to show proof of annual vaccination or be terminated.
The obligation to “first do no harm” must include consideration of the harm done to the psyche of a people, when they can be forced to submit to any vaccination(s), administered in any specified way, that an unelected government entity may dictate.
“First do no harm” also has an obligation to admit that ALL vaccines have been found to have some adverse effects, which have been harmful to the people who have experienced them, healthcare workers included.
You ask “what are they thinking?”, and that’s exactly what many professionals ARE doing – THINKING – questioning – reading research articles for themselves. Reading the conclusions of meta-analyses by the Cochrane Collaboration. Reading the CDC’s own literature and realizing that it has been far from transparent in it’s definitions and statistics regarding influenza.
I would ask that you give these points some thought, and see if you don’t think we all need to step away from the Pavlovian response most of us have developed when “influenza vaccination” is mentioned.

By Ron Psimas, VP,Crosstex Int on January 23rd, 2012 at 9:29 am

The first case against mandatory flu shots is subjecting anyone to a mandatory vaccine violates our rights. The government should not be making this determination. The second case against mandatory flu vaccines is the fact that the vaccine is always based on the previous year’s flu and as we all know the flu changes yearly. The third case against vaccines in general is the safety of the vaccine itself.


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