Influenza (flu) is a viral infection that can be serious and even fatal. It can be prevented with immunization and treated with antivirals. SHEA focuses our influenza efforts through statements, papers, advocacy, and guidance on influenza control in healthcare facilities, distribution and use of antiviral drugs, and influenza vaccine of healthcare workers, personal protective equipment, and other topics concerning seasonal and pandemic influenza.
Date Published: 2005
Date Revised: August 2010, ICHE
Abstract: In large part, the discussion about the rationale for influenza vaccination of healthcare personnel, the strategies designed to improve influenza vaccination rates in this population, and the recommendations made in the 2005 paper still stand. This position paper notes new evidence released since publication of the 2005 paper and strengthens SHEA’s position on the importance of influenza vaccination of HCP. This document does not discuss vaccine allocation during times of vaccine shortage, because the 2005 SHEA Position Paper still serves as the society’s official statement on that issue. SHEA views influenza vaccination of HCP as a core patient and HCP safety practice with which noncompliance should not be tolerated. Therefore, for the safety of both patients and HCP, SHEA endorses a policy in which annual influenza vaccination is a condition of both initial and continued HCP employment and/or professional privileges.