Influenza

Health officials implore healthcare workers to 'lead by example,' get flu shots; LTC still worst

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Healthcare workers should "lead by example" and get their influenza vaccinations sooner than later, health officials said on Thursday.

Flu season isn't over: 7 tips to help prevent the spread

Flu season isn't over: 7 tips to help prevent the spread

If a resident in a long-term care facility is suspected to have the flu, it's important to test, isolate and provide antiviral therapy.

Sick leave reduces flu infections: report

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Giving employees paid sick days would reduce flu infections in the workplace, according to a new analysis. Researchers simulated an influenza epidemic in Pittsburgh and Allegheny County and discovered that paid sick days would reduce flu cases by close to 6%, according to the University of Pittsburgh Graduate School of Public Health.

Flu shots don't hurt turnover, study says

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Requiring flu shots is not a primary reason for employees quitting, an analysis finds. While the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention recommends all healthcare employees receive the annual flu vaccine, facilities vary on whether to make it mandatory.

Preview of next flu vaccines on tap for stakeholders

Caregivers involved in the annual battle against influenza outbreaks will get an advance peek in a webinar Tuesday at what vaccine options for the 2013-14 flu season will be. Officials from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, and the National Center for Immunization and Respiratory Diseases will preview the possibilities. The webcast will begin at 3 p.m. Eastern Time. The presentation will include a review of vaccine effectiveness for the 2012-13 campaign.

With flu still raging, record death rate for seniors promises to climb

With flu still raging, record death rate for seniors promises to climb

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This season's flu strains continue to hit the senior population especially hard, with the majority of deaths and hospitalizations hitting those over the age of 65, according to the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Rising flu toll sparks tussle on shot rules

Rising flu toll sparks tussle on shot rules

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The contentious issue of whether healthcare workers should be required to be vaccinated against the flu gained new ferocity in January. Deaths caused by influenza hit 7.3% the first week of the month, triggering an automatic "epidemic" designation from health officials.

Nasty norovirus strain hits long-term care facilities especially hard

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Long-term care facilities are seeing the worst of a nationwide outbreak of a potentially dangerous new strain of norovirus, the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention announced Thursday.

Healthcare workers losing jobs over flu vaccine refusals, despite data from nursing home studies

Healthcare workers losing jobs over flu vaccine refusals, despite data from nursing home studies

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Some healthcare workers have lost their jobs for refusing the flu vaccine, sparking controversy as the 2013 flu season officially reached epidemic status.

Flu vaccines ineffective in adults over 65, analyses assert

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A flurry of recent studies has shown that flu shots don't offer much protection against influenza in elderly people who have received the vaccine, a recent report suggests.

CDC: Flu vaccinations among LTC workers declining

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While influenza vaccination rates among healthcare workers have increased overall, fewer long-term care facility employees are being vaccinated, a government survey has found.

Mandatory vaccinations vs. voluntary — not for wimps!

Mandatory vaccinations vs. voluntary — not for wimps!

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Let's talk about that controversial topic: mandatory healthcare worker influenza vaccination. I can hear the arguments for both sides already. But I say the case is clear.

Vaccination rates are low among at-risk adults in the U.S., research shows

Vaccination rates are low among at-risk adults in the U.S., research shows

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Despite strong federal and regulatory support for mandatory vaccinations among healthcare workers, the U.S. adult vaccination rate is on the low side, according to a new research brief.

Flu rates rising, but still relatively low, CDC says

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The overall incidence of influenza is on the rise in the United States — particularly in the Midwest — though it is still relatively low, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Colorado considers mandatory flu shots for nursing home workers

Officials from Colorado's state health department have proposed mandatory flu vaccinations for all nursing home employees, regardless of religious or personal exceptions.

Statins protect against influenza mortality, study shows

In what has become the latest positive news about statins, researchers have found they appear to reduce the risk of death in patients hospitalized with the flu.

Fewer flu outbreaks for nursing homes with vaccinated workers, study reports

Fewer flu outbreaks for nursing homes with vaccinated workers, study reports

Nursing homes with higher rates of flu vaccinations among direct caregivers have a dramatically lower number of flu outbreaks, a new study finds.

Report: Flu vaccination rates among healthcare workers continue to grow

Long-term care professionals had an influenza vaccine compliance rate of 64.4% during last year's flu season, compared with a 71.1% compliance rate among hospital workers, new data shows.

Virus-destroying face mask to be distributed to nursing homes

A medical face mask that catches and destroys 99.9% of infectious viruses - and kills them within five minutes - has been approved by the Food and Drug Administration. The masks have been approved for use in nursing homes and other healthcare settings.

Nursing homes to be judged by 21 new quality measures on federal website

Nursing homes to be judged by 21 new quality measures on federal website

The National Quality Forum on Wednesday came out in support of 21 measures to be used to care for both long-term nursing home residents and short-stay patients. These measures will be included in the Centers for Medicare & Medicaid Services' Nursing Home Compare website.

A shot (and a beer?)

A shot (and a beer?)

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If you want to work here, you will get vaccinated. Period.

Pandemic flu kit available for nursing homes

The New Jersey Hospital Association has issued a preparedness guide for nursing homes in the event of an influenza pandemic.

Vaccinate healthcare workers first to stem spread of influenza, Joint Commission says

The Joint Commission, an independent healthcare accreditation and certification organization, on Wednesday released guidance for increased healthcare worker influenza vaccinations.