Nurses Continue to be Justified in Refusing Mandatory Flu Shots

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Similar to the general public, nurses are increasingly refusing dangerous and often ineffective flu shots 

Responding to nurses who exert their science-based vaccination choice, hospitals have used both heavy-handed public shaming and coercion tactics of making them wear masks. Every year, scores of images populate social media feeds showing nurses wearing masks forced upon them during their hospital shifts because they refused their flu shots. A popular mainstream message is that we must all get our flu shots to protect the elderly who may die from the flu or its complications. Yet, however ‘caring’ this PR strategy may appear, we should occasionally look at the results.

What does it say about the infallibility of the ‘safe and effective’ vaccine narrative when those working within the very system that delivers the shots are refusing to take them themselves? Is it because nurses see vaccine injuries firsthand? Are the nurses, or anyone else, justified in refusing the flu shot?

Every quarter, the US Department of Justice (DOJ) issues a report to the Advisory Commission on Childhood Vaccines on vaccine injuries and deaths based on adjudicated settlements in the Vaccine Court. The settlements for the flu shot, which is now part of the recommended childhood schedule, are topping several consecutive DOJ reports. Furthermore, according to the US Special Claims Court website, flu shot settlements increased from $4.9 million in 2014 to $61 million in 2015 – an increase of more than a 1000 percent, and the year of 2016 saw an over 50 percent further increase from the year before.

Even pro-vaccine mainstream media outlets are being forced to do their job reporting flu shot dangers. The Washington Post ran an article with a rare admission of what they deemed a "hint of a link" between the influenza vaccine during pregnancy an miscarriages. However, as J.B. Handley, Jr. Co-founder of Generation Rescue pointed out,

Women who had received the two flu shots in successive seasons were almost 8x more likely to have a spontaneous abortion than those who had not — a nearly 700% increase.

The Washington Post was forced to immediately change its headline, shortly after Handley, Jr's message went public.

Miscarriages and chart-topping settlements for injury and death vs. authoritarian hospital policies -- would you take the flu shot if your employer forced you to? With a dismal track record of safety, are we to believe that settled vaccine science has at the least worked out the kinks with respect to the flu shot efficacy? Not so. According to epidemiologist Michael Osterholm of University of Minnesota, the science behind the flu shot “…is much more complicated than we thought...” He further stated: “I know less about influenza today than I did 10 years ago" and that the flu shot is "...a terribly inadequate vaccine."  Osterholm in effect has turned conventional medical wisdom on its head by admitting that the flu shot's performance "may falter even when the right strains were used to make it."

A recent study published in PLOS One has undermined the highly unethical practice of forcing healthcare professionals to take flu shots. The study found that, after further analysis, the outcomes of the four cluster-randomized controlled trials conducted in long-term care facilities, which were previously used to justify forcing flu shots on healthcare workers, are “exaggerated” and that “implausibly large reductions in patient risk” showed by the four studies in question cast “serious doubts on their validity.” The PLOS One study concluded that the research used to justify mandatory flu shots for health sector workers is flawed and that the policies cannot plausibly produce the benefits that had been widely assumed.

The lead author of the PLOS One study, Dr. Gaston de Serres told STAT: 

I think the bottom line of our paper is to say there is no valid scientific evidence, even now, underpinning enforced health care worker immunizations.” De Serres further said: “… it’s one thing to say: ‘OK, on a voluntary basis, you get the vaccine despite all its weaknesses,’ and it’s another thing to say, ‘If you don’t get it, you get fired.’

Stepping back and looking at the large swath of evidence that continues to be discovered, it appears that healthcare professionals who refuse their flu shots are indeed justified to do so.  But due to the continued workplace discrimination against them, the courts have been asked to weigh in. In 2015, a case was brought against the Sault Area Hospital in Sault Ste. Marie, ON after the hospital implemented a “vaccine or mask” policy, forcing nurses and other healthcare workers to wear uncomfortable surgical masks for their entire shifts for the duration of the flu season if they refused to get their annual flu shot. The arbitrator in the case called the “vaccine or mask” policy a “coercive tool” rather than a protective health policy.

If there was a genuine concern about preventing the transmission of the flu virus in the hospitals and if surgical masks were truly effective at doing that, any hospital worker would be required to wear them regardless of his or her flu shot compliance, given that the flu shot effectiveness can at best reach only 40 to 60 percent. Instead, healthcare workers appear to be, jointly with the general public, bearing the weight of an unscientific policy, aimed only at forcing vaccine rates up at all cost in a long-failed one-size-fits-all vaccine paradigm gone astray. Will we continue to see growing medical disobedience from multiple sectors of society and the workforce if their respective leadership continues to implement mandatory vaccination policies? 

For additional research potential harms caused by the Influenza Vaccine, visit our database on the subject. 

Disclaimer: This article is not intended to provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment. Views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of GreenMedInfo or its staff.

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