Flu Vaccination Frequently Asked Questions
About the policy
I don’t provide direct patient care. Why do I have to get the influenza (flu) vaccine?
LG Health is committed to providing a safe environment for all who work, visit and receive care in our facilities. Like our requirements for TB skin testing and MMR (measles, mumps and rubella) vaccination as a condition of employment. Flu immunization protects our patients, employees, and community members from getting this potentially serious infection.
I usually get my flu shot from my doctor. What information should I provide to prove I
received the shot?
You can submit a detailed bill (listing flu vaccine) or a note from your physician documenting the date you were vaccinated to Employee and Student Health. Flu shots will be offered free to employees, volunteers, physicians and students at Pennsylvania College of Health Sciences.
What will happen to employees who do not get the flu vaccine by November 15, 2016 and have not been granted an exemption?
Employees will not be able to work if they have not provided proof of vaccination and will go into the disciplinary process (including immediate suspension without pay). They would not be able to return to work until proof of vaccination is provided.
What will happen to volunteers or students who do not get the flu vaccine by November 15, 2016 and have not been granted an exemption?
They will not be permitted to enter LG Health facilities during flu season.
Is LG Health liable for adverse reactions employees may experience after getting the flu vaccine?
No, the hospital is not liable for adverse reactions anyone has to the flu vaccine. If an employee has a reaction, they would be eligible for Workers Compensation.
In addition, the government established a fund in 2005 (within US Dept. of Health & Human Services –HRSA) so anyone injured by a vaccine (influenza included) can file a claim from the National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program (VICP). Although the complications are extremely rare, the government wanted to try to reduce any barriers to people receiving the necessary vaccinations.
How do I get a medical or religious exemption from getting the flu shot?
Exemption request forms are available by clicking on the Flu Information button on the StarNet homepage. Exemption request forms must be submitted to Employee and Student Health no later than Oct. 1, 2016. No exemptions will be provided after Oct. 1 (unless a new employee).
Will I have any restrictions if I am granted an exemption?
Those who have been granted a medical or religious exemption will be required to wear a surgical mask when working within six feet of any person while the influenza virus is active in the community. LG Health will announce these dates when determined.
Can I catch the flu from a flu shot?
No. The flu vaccine is made from inactivated virus so you cannot catch the flu from the shot. If you get the flu or become ill after a flu shot, it is because you caught the flu virus before receiving the vaccine.
What are the common side effects of the flu vaccine?
Common side effects include mild soreness, redness or swelling at the injection site, headache or low‐grade fever.
Can I get the flu vaccine if I am pregnant?
Yes. Pregnant women or those planning on becoming pregnant SHOULD get the flu vaccine. Vaccinated women can transfer their antibodies and provide protection to their newborns.
Is the flu really that dangerous?
Influenza is a contagious disease which affects the lungs and can lead to serious illness, including pneumonia. Each year in the United States, approximately 200,000 people are hospitalized and 36,000 die from complications of influenza infection.
Is the flu vaccine safe and does it work?
Flu vaccines have been given for more than 50 years and have a very good safety track record. Their safety is closely monitored by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the Food and Drug Administration. The vaccine will prevent about 70 to 90 percent of people who receive it from developing moderate‐to‐ severe influenza infection.
Where can I learn more about influenza?
LG Health follows guidelines of the Centers for Disease Control, www.cdc.gov and also relies on information from the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, www.flu.gov