The issue of healthcare worker (HCW) flu vaccine mandates is of particular interest because no one has shown the shots help patients. Healthcare workers have had to accept many vaccines, including that for Hepatitis B, for decades. But flu vaccination mandates are particularly egregious.
The flu shot is given yearly. It does not prevent flu infections or flu deaths in patients. And the more often you get a flu shot, the less well it works. It may reduce absenteeism, but only by a small amount– because the effectiveness of the shots is low. Effectiveness is estimated at 37%, averaging CDC data on effectiveness over the past 12 years. Per the Cochrane Collaboration, you need to vaccinate 71 people to prevent one case of clinical flu. (I have added all these citations to earlier posts.)
The experts at CDC, FDA, NIH and their parent DHHS know this. We all read the same literature, and they hold and attend conferences where this is discussed. The federal govt paid for some of the research.
So why does the federal government insist on pushing these shots? Why must healthcare workers get them, or in many cases, be fired? Some thoughts:
1. Who controls healthcare? Healthcare workers (HCWs) must be trained to march in lockstep with what their anointed health agencies tell them, irrespective of the science. Loyalty must be to government and employer, rather than to professional standards. Doctors may no longer interpret the medical literature for themselves. Hospital administrators have happily issued draconian edicts and fired disloyal employees, increasing their power in the process.
2. Once doctors and healthcare workers have been pacified, the rest of the adult population, like the pediatric population, can be made to take whatever vaccines the government designates.
3. Autonomy is to be chipped away. We are not to be in control of our own bodies; rather, the government is, for the good of the community. Will mandated drugging be next?
4. While the flu shot program is being sold using the powerful memes of patient protection and Science, everyone who has looked into the science knows neither is true. But (as in George Orwell’s 1984) it is the memes we must bow down to, not the science.
Anyway, the new PLOS study concluded, as have others:
The impression that unvaccinated HCWs place their patients at great influenza peril is exaggerated. Instead, the HCW-attributable risk and vaccine-preventable fraction both remain unknown and the NNV (number needed to vaccinate) to achieve patient benefit still requires better understanding. Although current scientific data are inadequate to support the ethical implementation of enforced HCW influenza vaccination, they do not refute approaches to support voluntary vaccination or other more broadly protective practices, such as staying home or masking when acutely ill.
I believe the last sentence is directed at healthcare administrators, who a) demand unvaccinated staff wear face masks throughout flu season (totally stupid since you can’t spread flu when you don’t have it–but then, that is not why the mask edict was issued) and b) make it very difficult for HCWs to stay home when they are sick.