Friday, November 6, 2009

Rulings stop mandatory vaccination for University of Iowa hospital employees/ Gazette Online

Another hospital’s mandatory flu vaccination program will end after rulings were made Monday in favor of two unions.

Who's fooling who? If, as the NEJM reported, the live nasal flu vaccine used last winter was only 29% effective in adults, mandatory vaccination of employees who use this vaccine will still leave 71% susceptible to the flu and all that may imply regarding occupational spread. What kind of hubris mandates such an ineffective therapy, claiming it is critically important to protect patients?

If this was really about protecting patients, then employees who were sick would be home on sick leave when they develop a respiratory illness associated with cough. Jobs that fail to provide paid sick leave or otherwise penalize sick employees put patients at risk. Where are the mandates for paid sick leave? UPDATE: Nov. 11 NY Times says "White House Endorses Paid Sick Leave Bill."

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