Nursing Notes

November 11, 2009

Courthouse News Service

Filed under: Nursing — Shirley @ 2:55 am
Tags: , ,

This is very interesting.  At my hospital, there is also a rule that the nurses’s must get a flu shot or must wear a mask when at work.  I wonder how this will play out? 

I believe that everyone should have the right to decide what is “right” for them and I am not convinced that “the benefit of the many outweighs the rights of the one” in the case of getting a yearly flu shot. 

We all are exposed to flu every year.  Period.  Sure it may help if you get the flu shot, but it also may not….maybe the strain will have mutated before it ever gets to you and you will not have any protection from the new mutated strain simply because you got the shot from the parent strain.  So, although I got my yearly flu shot because I always get one not because someone made me, I believe that it would have been okay if I had decided to skip it this year since I’m not sure that the flu strain this year is what the vaccine is for.

When did we become a police state that dictates what we can and cannot do?  Where is our free choice? 

Yes, as nurses we should want to do everything to protect our patients, but who, exactly, is protecting the nurses from whatever the patients are bringing in with them?  In my practice I am continually exposed to infectious diseases because of the population and the types of illnesses being treated.  Flu is the least of my worries.


Nurses Win Restraining Order on Flu Masks
By NICK DIVITO
 
LAS VEGAS (CN) – A federal judge restrained two hospitals from forcing nurses and other caregivers to get flu shots or wear surgical masks. Sunrise and Southern Hills hospitals may not single out nurses and force them to wear surgical masks if they refuse flu shots, but U.S. District Judge Robert Jones ruled that the hospitals could require all employees to wear masks without violating his order.

Service Employees International Union Local 1107 filed a constitutional challenge last week to new rules requiring its members to get a flu shot or wear a mask, and to wear a mark on their ID badge indicating their vaccination status. The SEIU said the imposition of the rules, effective Nov. 1, violated a collective bargaining agreement. It also sought to prevent an H1N1 vaccination policy.

The hospitals argued that the union’s request for a restraining order was unnecessary and premature. “It is a longstanding principle of labor law that … a union member’s obligation is to ‘obey now and grieve later,’ and that “if an injunction overriding this principle is granted, it will disrupt the parties’ settled expectations,” Healthcare Corp. of America wrote.

But Jones found that because most of the hospitals’ workers already had been vaccinated there was little harm in issuing the injunction, and that union workers “would suffer irreparable harm without injunctive relief.”

Courthouse News Service

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