Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Infectious diseases experts call for mandatory flu vaccine for all health-care personnel

Date:
August 31, 2010
Source:
Infectious Diseases Society of America
Summary:
Influenza vaccination of health-care personnel is a professional and ethical responsibility and non-compliance with health-care facility policies regarding vaccination should not be tolerated, according to a position paper released by the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA).

Influenza vaccination of healthcare personnel is a professional and ethical responsibility and non-compliance with healthcare facility policies regarding vaccination should not be tolerated, according to a position paper released by the Society for Healthcare Epidemiology of America (SHEA).

The paper, published in this month's Infection Control and Healthcare Epidemiology journal and endorsed by the Infectious Diseases Society of America (IDSA), stresses influenza vaccination of healthcare personnel as a core patient safety practice that should be a condition of both initial and continued employment in healthcare facilities.

According to SHEA, their recommendations apply to all healthcare professionals in all healthcare settings, regardless of whether the professional has direct patient contact or whether he or she is directly employed by the facility. The policy also applies to students, volunteers, and contract workers. The only exemptions, say the epidemiologists and infectious disease physicians, should be in cases of medical contraindications.

"The transmission of influenza in healthcare settings is a substantial safety concern for both patients and healthcare personnel and deserves our attention and action," said Neil Fishman, MD, president of SHEA. "Healthcare providers are ethically obligated to take measures proven to keep patients from acquiring influenza in healthcare settings. Mandatory vaccination is the cornerstone to a comprehensive program designed to prevent the spread of influenza which also includes identification and isolation of infected patients, adherence to hand hygiene and cough etiquette, the appropriate use of protective equipment, and restriction of ill healthcare personnel and visitors in the facility."

The position paper, an update of an original statement issued in 2005, comes as healthcare personnel and facilities prepare for the upcoming 2010 flu season, and on the heels of one of the worst flu seasons in our nation's history, the result of the H1N1 strain. Last year's flu season highlighted the necessity for stronger policies for healthcare personnel influenza vaccination, especially in light of the low vaccination rates in many voluntary influenza vaccination programs.

"Given the debate that surrounded mandatory healthcare personnel vaccination during the last influenza season, we support and applaud SHEA for issuing a strong and unequivocal statement about the critical importance of healthcare personnel vaccination," said Richard Whitley, MD, president of IDSA.

According to a 2009 RAND Corporation survey, 39 percent of healthcare professionals stated they had no intention of getting vaccinated despite the heightened concern surrounding influenza with the H1N1 pandemic.

"The scientific evidence shows significant reductions in the risk of influenza in both acute and long-term care settings as a result of strong immunization policies and programs," Dr. Whitley said. "Vaccination of healthcare personnel saves patients' lives and reduces illness. It also protects the individual worker from falling ill during influenza outbreaks and from missing work, which further impacts patient care." IDSA also supports SHEA's recommendation that a mandatory vaccination program be part of a multi-faceted, comprehensive infection control program.

Fishman added that he believes that this position paper, coupled with full and visible support of mandatory influenza vaccination by healthcare facility leadership, will dramatically improve the rates of vaccination.

To see the complete position paper, go to: www.shea-online.org.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Infectious Diseases Society of America. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. RobertM. Rakita, BeverlyA. Hagar, Patricia Crome, JoyceK. Lammert. Mandatory Influenza Vaccination of Healthcare Workers: A 5‐Year Study. Infection Control and Hospital Epidemiology, 2010; 31 (9): 881 DOI: 10.1086/656210

Cite This Page:

Infectious Diseases Society of America. "Infectious diseases experts call for mandatory flu vaccine for all health-care personnel." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 31 August 2010. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100831073246.htm>.
Infectious Diseases Society of America. (2010, August 31). Infectious diseases experts call for mandatory flu vaccine for all health-care personnel. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 31, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100831073246.htm
Infectious Diseases Society of America. "Infectious diseases experts call for mandatory flu vaccine for all health-care personnel." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2010/08/100831073246.htm (accessed July 31, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, July 31, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Health Insurers' Profits Slide

Reuters - Business Video Online (July 30, 2014) Obamacare-related costs were said to be behind the profit plunge at Wellpoint and Humana, but Wellpoint sees the new exchanges boosting its earnings for the full year. Fred Katayama reports. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Peace Corps Pulls Workers From W. Africa Over Ebola Fears

Newsy (July 30, 2014) The Peace Corps is one of several U.S.-based organizations to pull workers out of West Africa because of the Ebola outbreak. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Weather Kills 2K A Year, But Storms Aren't The Main Offender

Newsy (July 30, 2014) Health officials say 2,000 deaths occur each year in the U.S. due to weather, but it's excessive heat and cold that claim the most lives. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

Concern Grows Over Worsening Ebola Crisis

AFP (July 30, 2014) Pan-African airline ASKY has suspended all flights to and from the capitals of Liberia and Sierra Leone amid the worsening Ebola health crisis, which has so far caused 672 deaths in Guinea, Liberia and Sierra Leone. Duration: 00:43 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

    Environment News

    Technology News



    Save/Print:
    Share:

    Free Subscriptions


    Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

    Get Social & Mobile


    Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

    Have Feedback?


    Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
    Mobile: iPhone Android Web
    Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
    Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
    Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins