Most Physicians Plan to Get Influenza Vaccine
Medscape Medical News – Most physicians plan to get vaccinated this year, according to a new survey by the National Foundation for Infectious Diseases (NFID), released last week.
Physicians are the most important immunization influencers, said William Schaffner, MD, NFID president and chair of the Department of Preventive Medicine at Vanderbilt University School of Medicine, Nashville, Tennessee. Fortunately, they practice what they preach.
“It appears that physicians are fulfilling 2 very important responsibilities,” Dr. Schaffner said during a press conference convened by NFID. First, “[t]hey are protecting themselves from getting infected so they can meet their professional obligations. When influenza season comes we need all hands on deck in our hospitals, clinics, emergency rooms, and private practices.”
Second, they are also protecting their patients. “The doctors won’t get infected and pass the virus on to the patients in their care, so it’s a patient safety issue,” he said.
The survey of 400 primary care physicians, including 100 pediatricians, commissioned by the NFID found that 92% of physicians were vaccinated against seasonal influenza last year, and 95% say they have been or plan to get vaccinated this year.
The survey also found that 92% of physicians personally discuss the vaccine with their patients. Only 2% said they would definitely not get the vaccine this season.
And they aren’t just getting protection for themselves: 96% of physicians recommend the vaccine to their close friends and extended families.
Dr. Pinna says:
Docs are not dopes. Yes, there is a tiny risk in getting a flu shot. But, there is also a tiny risk in crossing the street.Â Protect yourself and your family. Get a flu shot.
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