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Vaccination of health care workers against influenza: is it time to think about a mandatory policy in Europe?
Vaccine. 2014 Aug 27; 32(38):4844-8.V

Abstract

Nosocomial influenza outbreaks and the transmission of influenza to health care workers (HCWs) have been well described. However, vaccine coverage among HCWs still remains low. After three decades of official recommendations that all HCWs be vaccinated against influenza, vaccination rates generally remain below 30% in Europe. Experiences in the USA have shown that mandatory policies achieve a compliance rate of nearly 100%. However, the discussion about mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs has not advanced very far in Europe. This article therefore discusses the question whether it is time to consider mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs in Europe. We further elaborate under which conditions mandatory vaccination polices would be ethically justified and how far these conditions are met in the case of influenza vaccination of HCWs. From a methodological perspective, it would be desirable to have further high-quality RCTs with a lower risk of bias that investigate the effectiveness of HCWs influenza vaccination. From a policy perspective, however, we have to decide whether we have already sufficient (albeit not perfect) evidence to justify mandatory influenza vaccination programs for HCWs. We conclude: Given the available evidence concerning the benefits, burdens and risks of HCWs influenza vaccination and the limited effectiveness of voluntary policies, it is time to consider mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs in Europe.

Authors+Show Affiliations

Occupational Health Service, University Hospital Frankfurt, Goethe University, Theodor-Stern-Kai 7, 60590 Frankfurt am Main, Germany. Electronic address: Sabine.Wicker@kgu.de.Ludwig-Maximilians-University, Munich, Department of Medical Ethics, Lessingstrasse 2, 80336 Munich, Germany. Electronic address: marckmann@lmu.de.

Pub Type(s)

Journal Article

Language

eng

PubMed ID

24120676

Citation

Wicker, Sabine, and Georg Marckmann. "Vaccination of Health Care Workers Against Influenza: Is It Time to Think About a Mandatory Policy in Europe?" Vaccine, vol. 32, no. 38, 2014, pp. 4844-8.
Wicker S, Marckmann G. Vaccination of health care workers against influenza: is it time to think about a mandatory policy in Europe? Vaccine. 2014;32(38):4844-8.
Wicker, S., & Marckmann, G. (2014). Vaccination of health care workers against influenza: is it time to think about a mandatory policy in Europe? Vaccine, 32(38), 4844-8. https://doi.org/10.1016/j.vaccine.2013.09.062
Wicker S, Marckmann G. Vaccination of Health Care Workers Against Influenza: Is It Time to Think About a Mandatory Policy in Europe. Vaccine. 2014 Aug 27;32(38):4844-8. PubMed PMID: 24120676.
* Article titles in AMA citation format should be in sentence-case
TY - JOUR T1 - Vaccination of health care workers against influenza: is it time to think about a mandatory policy in Europe? AU - Wicker,Sabine, AU - Marckmann,Georg, Y1 - 2013/10/10/ PY - 2013/05/30/received PY - 2013/08/25/revised PY - 2013/09/26/accepted PY - 2013/10/15/entrez PY - 2013/10/15/pubmed PY - 2015/3/7/medline KW - Health care worker KW - Infection control KW - Influenza KW - Mandatory vaccination KW - Policy SP - 4844 EP - 8 JF - Vaccine JO - Vaccine VL - 32 IS - 38 N2 - Nosocomial influenza outbreaks and the transmission of influenza to health care workers (HCWs) have been well described. However, vaccine coverage among HCWs still remains low. After three decades of official recommendations that all HCWs be vaccinated against influenza, vaccination rates generally remain below 30% in Europe. Experiences in the USA have shown that mandatory policies achieve a compliance rate of nearly 100%. However, the discussion about mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs has not advanced very far in Europe. This article therefore discusses the question whether it is time to consider mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs in Europe. We further elaborate under which conditions mandatory vaccination polices would be ethically justified and how far these conditions are met in the case of influenza vaccination of HCWs. From a methodological perspective, it would be desirable to have further high-quality RCTs with a lower risk of bias that investigate the effectiveness of HCWs influenza vaccination. From a policy perspective, however, we have to decide whether we have already sufficient (albeit not perfect) evidence to justify mandatory influenza vaccination programs for HCWs. We conclude: Given the available evidence concerning the benefits, burdens and risks of HCWs influenza vaccination and the limited effectiveness of voluntary policies, it is time to consider mandatory vaccination policies for HCWs in Europe. SN - 1873-2518 UR - https://www.unboundmedicine.com/medline/citation/24120676/Vaccination_of_health_care_workers_against_influenza:_is_it_time_to_think_about_a_mandatory_policy_in_Europe L2 - https://linkinghub.elsevier.com/retrieve/pii/S0264-410X(13)01338-8 DB - PRIME DP - Unbound Medicine ER -