Wednesday, February 24, 2010

H1N1 Vaccination Keeps You and Your Patients Safe

Oncology nurses are aware of the need to prevent infection in neutrapenic patients. But what about preventing your own infections? Although the number of H1N1 cases in oncology nurses has not been measured, the illness poses a risk from two fronts: We may be seeing infected patients in our daily practice and we also run the risk of giving the virus to uninfected patients and co-workers.

Immunocompromised patients may not benefit from vaccination because they are not always able to mount an adequate immune response. thus preventing nurses from developing the infection and passing it along to those patients becomes a high priority. Unfortunately, limited sick leave, staffing issues and peer pressure may promote some nurses with mild symptoms to come to work, risking coworkers and patients.

According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC, 2009), nurses in any treatment setting should receive the vaccine. Although the Joint Commissions suggests optional vaccination with a provision to opt out for religious or medical reasons. However, attempting to force vaccination for hospital nurses has resulted in pending legal action. In 2009, less than half of hospital healthcare workers were vaccinated against the flu (CDC, 2009).

The CDC (2009) indicated that H1N1 treatment should not wait for laboratory confirmation. In addition, a negative rapid test does not rule out influenza. The antiviral medications oseltamivir (Tamiflu) and zanamivir (Relenza)can reduce the severity and duration of and complications from H1N1 and are recommended for individuals with suspected or confirmed influenza requiring hospitalization.

Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (2009). Seasonal influenza vaccination
resources for healthcare professionals. Retrieved December 22, 2009, from http://www.cdc.gov/flu/professionals/vaccination/index.htm

6 comments:

Johnson said...

I had read about this virus in news papers & I know how dangerous it is for us. H1N1 Vaccination keeps us safe from H1N1 flu which can be responsible for death also

Great Stuff !

Nursing Programs education at Canadian college

Anonymous said...

Should an immunocompromised patient still receive the vaccination?

soft cialis said...

vaccination against H1N1 influenza is extremely important for achieving prevent the outbreak of this disease in the oncology department and throughout the hospital and throughout the country

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Paul Smith said...
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