Two thirds of primary care and community nurses have flu jab
More than two-thirds of primary care and community nurses have received the flu jab this year.
A survey by Nursing in Practice of more than 1100 nurses shows 69.2% have been vaccinated against flu. This is compared to flu vaccine coverage of 44.6% among all healthcare workers in 2011 and 34.7% in 2010.
Of those 30.8% of primary care and community nurses that have not yet had the flu jab, 14.7% said it was because of personal – medical or religious – reasons and 33.3% said they didn’t feel as though they “needed it”.
Despite an overwhelming number of nurses reporting they encourage high risk patients to have the flu jab (97%), more than half (51.5) do not believe it should be mandatory for all nurses to be vaccinated against influenza.
A Department of Health spokesperson said: "It is very encouraging that more than two thirds of the people surveyed by Nursing in Practice had been vaccinated. The flu vaccine is the best way for nurses and other healthcare workers to protect themselves and their patients from flu so we would urge them to get the vaccine if they haven't already."
Jane Cummings, Chief Nursing Officer for England, said: “Flu can be a killer, especially in those who are already ill or particularly vulnerable. I believe every nurse should see it as a professional and moral duty to protect their patients from it. The very best way to protect your patients is to have the flu vaccination and it is great to see the increase in primary and community nurses who have had the flu jab this year and I would like to say a huge thank you to all of them.”