Nursing school and immunizations - Mothering Forums

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#1 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 11:32 AM - Thread Starter
 
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I'm considering nursing school but I have to show proof of immunizations, etc.  I have received all childhood immunizations per my wonderful mother, but I have, as an adult, decided to stay away from injecting vaccines into my body.  Does anyone know if there is ANYTHING I can do to get around this? 

 

Thanks.

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#2 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 02:00 PM
 
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Probably not.

http://www.mothering.com/community/t/530131/nursing-school-and-vaxing
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#3 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 02:14 PM
 
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Pick another job?

 

Do you really want to be working in the hosptialwhere you can be exposed to mums, Hep B, and mnay otehr ilnesses wihout even  60-90% chance of protection?

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#4 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 02:26 PM
 
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Your state may allow philosophical exemptions that will allow you to get around this requirement. I believe half of the states allow these.
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#5 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 02:34 PM
 
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The problem is clinical sites - these aren't regulated by school exemption laws, KWIM? If you can't go to clinicals at hospitals then you can't graduate from nursing school.
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#6 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 02:58 PM
 
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You can call the nursing school and ask them for advice.  In all honesty, it will probably boil down to deciding which thing you are most passionate about--a career as a nurse, or avoiding immunization.  They may very well be mutually exclusive.

 

I had a documented severe allergy to a common childhood vaccination, so I never received the full series (just for that one disease, I had all the other ones).  After I was accepted to nursing school at a local university and received notification that I would have to update my vaccines, I went in and explained my case.  Their answer?  Get the vaccine or drop out of nursing school.  This was at a very well-respected prestigious university.  I researched the vaccine and found that it had been reformulated since I was a child, so I chose to get it and fortunately everything went well.  If they're not willing to let you off the hook due to a documented severe allergy, I doubt they'll let you off the hook for anything.

 

Also, for what its worth, many healthcare organizations also have similar vaccine requirements for their employees.  I work for a large healthcare system, and every employee signs a statement upon hire that says they agree to stay completely up to date on all vaccinations (including flu).  If at any point in the future, you do not have a vaccination (for any reason--allergy, religious, change of thinking, contraindications) you will be terminated.  Many nurses I know work for other organizations that have similar policies.

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#7 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 07:30 PM
 
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I also had allergic reaction as child. I went in shock after flu vaccine. Well, apparantely I am truly allergic to thermasol. It was confirmed with alelrgy testing.  I get preservative free vaccines no. I  never had any issues again. My work requires vaccinations.

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#8 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 09:40 PM
 
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Whaaaaa...? I thought there was a way to get around it. Well, poo. greensad.gif Actually, I don't mind getting the main ones like tdap and mmr but... I will never get the flu vaccine and I will stay true to that. This sucks.  Now, I will have to find something else career-wise. 


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#9 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 10:55 PM
 
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Originally Posted by C is for Cookie View Post

Whaaaaa...? I thought there was a way to get around it. Well, poo. greensad.gif  Actually, I don't mind getting the main ones like tdap and mmr but... I will never get the flu vaccine and I will stay true to that. This sucks.  Now, I will have to find something else career-wise. 

I would check the requirements. I used to teach nursing and our students were not required to get flu vax. And none of the hospitals I've worked in require it either. It is recommended but not compulsory.

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#10 of 22 Old 07-13-2012, 11:15 PM
 
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Joint Comission  changed recommendations.

 

You can still get a waiver but you will have to

 

a) Wear a mask at all times

 

b) Or work in the are that does not require patient contact.

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#11 of 22 Old 07-14-2012, 06:46 AM
 
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Hm, ok. Yeah, I kinda freaked out last night because I really want to be a nurse. I am in the pre-nursing stage of my bsn. Thanks for clarifying, katelove and alenushka! thumbsup.gif


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#12 of 22 Old 07-14-2012, 07:02 AM
 
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Please remember that Joint Commission sets the minimum standard and organizations can always have more strict standards.  The requirements I stated above (no vaccine=no job) apply throughout the entire company that I work for--patient care or not.  From talking with other nurses, it sounds like more and more healthcare organizations are going this way to protect their patients and their staff members.  Also, it's quite difficult to find non-patient care jobs (especially as a new grad) because that is the bulk of the work that nurses do.  I'm not trying to sway you away from nursing--I just think that if you are passionate about avoiding vaccination then you should talk to your nursing advisor about it and then also follow-up with a few of the major employers of nurses in your area.

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#13 of 22 Old 07-14-2012, 07:05 AM
 
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As a nurse, you may have to give other people the flu vaccine even if you manage to avoid it yourself. Is this something you'd be comfortable with?

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#14 of 22 Old 07-14-2012, 07:21 PM
 
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So, If I was a patient in the hospital and my nurse was wearing a mask, and I found out she is not vaccinated, I would ask for another nurse. One is contagious before one has simptoms.

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#15 of 22 Old 07-15-2012, 05:38 AM
 
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YEs, you can object to it although the university itself may decide to not allow you to go ahead, as that is at their discretion...but can be appealed. I refused Hep B when I was doing my midwifery at University in the UK and apart from a crazy nurse that called me and told me I was going to die if I didn't get it, it was all fine. I just signed the waiver. 

 

If you look in to Hep B stats, even if you catch it, if you are healthy and look after yourself, you are unlikely to even become one of the 5% that need inpatient hospital care. Remember, the stats on Hep B don't show the overall health of the population before catching it. When you start digging, I'd rather be healthy enough to deal with Hep B, that contribute to ill health and STILL run the risk of catching it anyway, as vaccines are not 100% effective (no where close!).

 

If you don't want it, do not do it. Find a way round it. I'm currently applying for my US Visa (husband is American but we've been living here a few years) and although it will take me about 10 months longer plus a ton of paperwork, it is not worth sacrificing my principles, beliefs and health just for an easier application.

 

If they don't let you in without vaccines, this may be the worlds way of telling you it's just not for you!


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#16 of 22 Old 07-15-2012, 02:48 PM
 
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Originally Posted by Alenushka View Post

So, If I was a patient in the hospital and my nurse was wearing a mask, and I found out she is not vaccinated, I would ask for another nurse. One is contagious before one has simptoms.

If a nurse was not wearing a mask, would you ask to make sure she had not been recently vaccinated with FluMist?

 

Strange but true fact: FluMist sheds, and nurses are often given FluMist.

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#17 of 22 Old 07-15-2012, 03:02 PM
 
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If a nurse was not wearing a mask, would you ask to make sure she had not been recently vaccinated with FluMist?

 

Strange but true fact: FluMist sheds, and nurses are often given FluMist.

 

And plenty of illness are transmittable that aren't VPDs.  You are far more likely to get MRSA in a hospital than the flu.


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#18 of 22 Old 07-15-2012, 04:26 PM
 
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ma2two--In the large organization where I work, FluMist is only given to about 1% of the employees and those employees are not allowed to be in patient care areas for a certain period of time afterwards (I don't know how long it is--sorry).

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#19 of 22 Old 07-15-2012, 05:28 PM
 
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ma2two--In the large organization where I work, FluMist is only given to about 1% of the employees and those employees are not allowed to be in patient care areas for a certain period of time afterwards (I don't know how long it is--sorry).

It would be interesting if you could find out. It should be at least 3 weeks. I'm really glad to hear it's only 1% of the employees at your organization. But I doubt that is the case in general. I don't believe the CDC or any official policy makers have publicly expressed a concern about FluMist shedding.

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#20 of 22 Old 07-16-2012, 08:23 PM
 
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Rates of MRSA have been falling.

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#21 of 22 Old 07-17-2012, 06:08 AM
 
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Rates of MRSA have been falling.

 

Falling can still mean much higher - I don't know if it's actually the case, what are the figures anyway, stats anyone? Relative risks of getting MSRA vs flu in a hospital, and relative risks of adverse consequences?


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#22 of 22 Old 07-17-2012, 06:59 AM
 
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Sorry, y'all... the MRSA discussion is off-topic for the thread. Thanks for keeping this conversation about vax requirements and the nursing profession. smile.gif

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