NFID publishes strategies to increase flu vaccination among health care workers

NEWS IN BRIEF — Posted April 7, 2008

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Health care facilities can up the number of employees immunized against influenza by harnessing the energy of staff at every level, but no one program is a solution for all, according to "Immunizing Healthcare Personnel Against Influenza, A Report on Best Practices," published by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases last month.

The organization has been sounding the alarm for several years that the low rate of flu vaccination among health care workers is endangering patients. The suggestions in this report were gathered from a recent round table meeting involving other organizations, such as the American Medical Association, also interested in improving this situation.

"We've found that providers across various health care settings struggle with the same issues when it comes to immunizing staff against influenza," said Susan J. Rehm, MD, NFID's medical director.

Suggestions include establishing mobile vaccination carts, making immunizations free, launching intensive educational programs, requiring signed declinations and mandating it. Barriers include a lack of buy-in from some quarters, and employee turnover meaning that education is a constant need.

Note: This item originally appeared at

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