Post # 1
I am required by my employer to receive a flu shot. I can opt out of getting one, but I would then be required to wear a mask when I am in contact with my patients. I have never had the flu and I am not keen on the side effects of the Flu shot or the risk of Guillain-Barre syndrome(although I know its VERY minimal) associated with it. I am a psych nurse though, and wearing a mask is not conducive to establishing a trust relationship with my patients, many of whom are paranoid. I am going to suck it up and just get the shot. I am curious to hear from other Bees about the flu shot. Are you getting one? Why or why not? I am also interested in hearing from Bees in the medical/pharmaceutical/Bio med industry on their feelings about the flu shot and its effectiveness and/or safety. TIA to all who reply or take the poll.
Post # 3
I never get a flu shot because I have an amazing immune system. However, if my job kind of depended on it like yours does, I think I’d get it. I’d rather my patients feel at ease than worry about side effects.
Post # 4
I’ve personally never had a flu shot. I’ve never seen the point as I’ve only had the flu once in my life (granted I as miserable and begged my mother to kill me repeatedly).
My mother is a nurse and has been for over 20 years and has never gotten the shot either. Even ith the hundreds of patients she sees a year she only ever gets the flu about once every 4-5 years, and then it’s mild at worst. My reasoning is that if the woman who works in virus central is ok without one, then me who deals with people on a much smaller scale is good to go.
However, if your employeer requires it or would empose a condition that would be detrimental to your work (as you decribed) there’s probably not too much risk in getting one.
Also, if you DO have a negative reaction to the shot then you have that on record and can possibly be exempted from getting it the next year.
Post # 5
I get them every year without any side effects whatsoever.
Years ago I didnt bother and yep you guessed it, caught the flu – not a cold, actual influenza. Took literally WEEKS to get over, even my fingers ached.
Post # 6
I work in the pathology lab at a hospital and we get the flu shot offered free to us each year, although it isn’t compulsory for us to have it. The first year I got it, I did get a bit sick afterwards, but that was just my a humoral response to the vaccine. I didn’t actually get the flu. I’ve had it every year since and had no reaction to it at all… besides a slightly sore arm from the needle 🙂
My friend who also works in the same hospital skipped getting it last year and caught the flu. She said it was awful and will never, ever skip getting the shot again.
Post # 7
- Wedding: October 2014 - Savannah, GA
The risks are very, very minimal. I’d definitely get one if it meant I’d have to wear a mask otherwise. Those things are uncomfortable and hot after 5 minutes let alone all patient contact time.
Post # 8
I always get it. A lot of my friends work in medicine and also (happily) get their annual flu shot. It may not offer perfect protection, but it can absolutely limit duration and severity of illness.
Post # 9
I get the flu shot every year because I work with kids a lot. I’ve never had any side effects.
Post # 10
I get a flu shot. Flu season can be so terrible, I’d rather not risk it. I know it isn’t foolproof, but I feel better knowing I’ve had one. And I am going to be working in a school soon, so I will definitely be keeping up with it!
Post # 11
I’m normally very healthy and the one year I got a seasonal flu shot, I got some kind of cold/flu/other that lasted for 3 MONTHS and I had to be prescribed inhalers (I do not have asthma!) It was horrible. Maybe unrelated, but it’s the sickest I’ve ever been and the flu shot certainly didn’t prevent it.
The seasonal flu shot isn’t generally effective, see articles on “the Canadian problem,” for one thing. I do believe in vaccines when appropriate and if there is a major high lethality epidemic, I’ll probably get the shot for that, even if it isn’t properly tested before being released (they likely won’t have time. Epidemics are problematic like that).
I take good precautions to avoid the seasonal flu (like wearing my winter gloves to hold the gas nozzle etc., when weather-appropriate, and always washing my hands as soon as I come home). It works well for me and guaranteed no side effects! I think that’s reasonable for something with a very low lethality rate. I generally don’t like to take medications when I don’t really have to, and the same applies with vaccinations. I will take both when it’s really called for, but overmedication is problematic, IMO. Popping a pill or getting an injection should rarely be the answer to things.
Post # 12
I would rather wear the mask
Post # 13
I get it because I work in an acute psychiatric hospital where most of my patients are homeless/transients. I’m reguarly exposed to TB, flu, scabies, etc… and as a kid/teen I never had the best immune system.
We can also opt out and choose to wear the masks during flu season, but given my work environment, I’m not too keen on wearing anything that a patient can grab off me or anything that has strings.
Post # 14
I get a flu shot every year; college campuses can be petry dishes for things like flu and I can’t afford to miss a week of class for my students.
The risks are very minimal. And, statistically speaking, exponentially more people die from the flu each year than from complications from the flu shot. So I think it’s a bigger risk not to get it than to have it.
Post # 15
I would get it if I was a high risk person either because of my job, my age or medical issues. Because I don’t fall into these categories I wouldn’t have it.
Obviously that might change with time
Post # 16
I work in health care , direct patient contact. In previous years I did not take the flu shot because it gave me severe swelling of the lymph glands, headache, fever etc. this year I caught the flu, developed pneumonia and then had a bad side effect to the antibiotics for the pneumonia. I think I’ll take the shot next year.