Holy Sneezing, Coughing, Feverish Piglets of Doom, Batman!
I've had the flu before, and as someone with chronic asthma problems, punctuated by the occasional bout of bronchitis or pneumonia to relieve the monotony, I'm always first in line for the flu shot du jour. Same for the swine flu shot/mist when it makes it to my town -- wild elephants will not be able to keep me away.
I'm truly baffled by people who would rather get the flu than suffer through a momentary jab with a miniscule sharpened object, but wev.
This, however, I did not know:
Recent polls say doctors and nurses may be more resistant to getting vaccinated than most Americans. The British Medical Journal published a survey showing that less than half of health care professionals are willing to receive the vaccine, while a poll from the Nursing Times found that only 37 percent of front-line nurses plan to be vaccinated against H1N1 influenza.
This is consistent with data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention indicating that 60 percent of American health care workers traditionally don’t get vaccinated even against the seasonal flu.
Indeed, unimmunized health care workers infected with the flu can show only mild symptoms, yet still have to potential to infect others. Also, a recent study showed that those infected with the H1N1 virus can be contagious for up to eight days after the onset of symptoms, significantly longer than strains of seasonal flu.
There are over 11 million health care providers working in our hospitals, nursing homes and medical clinics. And with studies suggesting that 70 percent of doctors plan to continue working despite being sick with flu-like symptoms, tens of thousands of contagious workers can potentially infect patients who are already sick, or predisposed to flu complications. We owe it to our patients to receive the H1N1 influenza vaccine.