Mandatory flu vaccine for health care workers to protect patients

October 29, 2012

All health care workers in health care institutions should be vaccinated with the annual influenza vaccine to protect patients, argues an editorial in CMAJ.

"Each season, 20% of get influenza, and 28% of young healthy adults who get it have asymptomatic or subclinical infections," writes Dr. Ken Flegel, Senior Associate Editor, CMAJ. "Some of them may shed virus up to a day before symptoms appear. It is time that all people who work in a health care institution be vaccinated."

In Canada, there are approximately 20 000 hospital admissions related to influenza and an estimated 4000 to 8000 deaths attributed to the illness. However, 55%

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