By Andy Norton, MD, CMO, MLH
The Main Line Health 2017-2018 mandatory flu vaccination program begins on October 9 this year for employees, physicians, specified healthcare professionals and volunteers. Since 2010, MLH policy has required all physicians, specified health professionals, employees, contracted clinical personnel and volunteers to be vaccinated against influenza as a condition of employment or use of MLH facilities.
Vaccinations are free and will take place across MLH until December 4, 2017, which is the deadline for compliance with our flu vaccination policy. You can see the complete vaccination schedule on the intranet.
- The standard immunization is latex-free and will provide protection against four strains of flu, helping to reduce the risk of infection among your family as well as your patients and colleagues.
- Egg-free (and latex-free) vaccinations for staff with previously noted egg allergies will be available at no charge. All individuals who were previously granted a medical exemption on the basis of an egg allergy are now required to participate in the mandatory flu vaccination program. Individuals 18 and over who are egg-allergic should call Occupational Health (484.565.1293) to schedule an appointment to receive the egg-free product, which is also latex-free.
- Individuals who are 65 years or older and requesting the “age over 65” flu vaccine should call Occupational Health (484.565.1293) to schedule an appointment to receive this product. Please note the “age over 65” vaccine DOES contain latex.
The safety of our patients, employees, medical staff and community is best served by high rates of immunity. MLH data on patient flu infection rates for last year show no patient developed influenza while hospitalized in any MLH facility.
To speed the immunization and data entry process and ensure more detailed reporting, employees should fill out “My MLH Flu Consent Form” online through MLH Self Service before being vaccinated, and bring their ID badge to the vaccination site.
- Employees who are vaccinated at a non-MLH facility may send documentation (Informed Consent Form or receipt indicating vaccination) to the MLH Occupational Health Office by faxto 610.903.1082 or by interoffice or regular mail to: Occupational Health Exton Square Health Center, 154 Exton Square Parkway, Exton, PA 19341
- Physicians vaccinated at non-MLH locations will need to send proof of vaccination to the Medical Staff Office by fax (484.337.3731 or 484.337.8036) or email (firstname.lastname@example.org), including the Lot Number of the vaccine. Retain original documentation for at least four months.
MLH strongly urges all staff to receive the vaccination for the upcoming influenza season. Vaccinating health care professionals against influenza has been shown to result in lower flu rates in the community.
Those who wish to apply for a medical exemption for 2017-2018 should use the Flu Medical Exemption Form available on the intranet. Staff who had temporary exemptions previously will need to reapply in order to receive a medical exemption for this flu season. Anyone who has received a permanent exemption does not need to reapply unless notified otherwise.
Medical exemptions will be reviewed by our Occupational Health Physicians. Religious exemptions will continue to be recognized, but we strongly urge all staff to receive the vaccination for the upcoming influenza season to safeguard themselves and our patients. Instructions for submitting new religious exemption requests are included in the Flu FAQs on the intranet. All exemption requests need to be submitted no later than October 31, 2017.
Complete information — including the vaccination schedule, Flu FAQs, medical exemption form, and flu reference material — is available through the Flu Season 2017-2018 link on the MLH intranet homepage.
As always, thank you for your continued support and participation and for all that you do to help keep our patients safe.
The schedule of vaccinations next week is:
Bryn Mawr Hospital
Monday, October 9 6:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. BMH Rotunda
Tuesday, October 10 8:00a.m.- 8:00 p.m. BMH Rotunda
Wednesday, October 11 6:00a.m. – 8:00 p.m. BMH Rotunda
Saturday, October 14 3:00p.m. – 9:00 p.m. BMH Rotunda
Sunday, October 15
Lankenau Medical Center
Thursday, October 12 6:00 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Auditorium Lobby
Friday, October 13 9:30 a.m. – 8:00 p.m. Auditorium Lobby
Saturday, October 14 7:00 a.m. – 1:00 p.m. Auditorium Lobby
Sunday, October 15 3:00 p.m. – 9:00 p.m. Auditorium Lobby
Other MLH Locations
Tuesday, October 10 9:00 a.m. – 11:00 a.m. 240 RCR, Rm. 111