Gearing Up for Flu Season: Debbie Dooley

As another flu season approaches, we caught up with Debbie Dooley, clinical nurse manager of Johns Hopkins Occupational Health, for details on the mandatory vaccine program at Johns Hopkins Medicine, now in its second year.

Who needs to get the influenza vaccine?
Whether or not they work directly with patients, all Johns Hopkins Hospital and Johns Hopkins Outpatient Center employees are required to receive the annual vaccine. Outside of the East Baltimore campus, all Johns Hopkins Medicine personnel who work in patient care settings must have the vaccine.

How many employees will be vaccinated?
About 50,000 staff members across all Johns Hopkins Medicine entities/hospitals will receive vaccinations this year. Last season’s total was more than 36,000 for the The Johns Hopkins Hospital and other locations in and around Baltimore. More than 95 percent of our clinical staff were vaccinated for flu last season.

Will the nasal mist be available?
Yes, but in limited locations. The nasal mist is a live virus vaccine that requires employees to share confidential medical information before it’s administered. That’s why it’s not provided on hospital units where it’s difficult to protect the privacy of our employees.
If employees are concerned about needles, however, we can do an intradermal right under the skin instead of into the muscle.

Are there any new flu-prevention products this year?
Some people are allergic to eggs, which are used in the production of standard flu vaccinations. FLUBLOK, which we hope to receive late October, does not contain egg products and may be used in those staff members who have egg allergies.

What is the deadline for getting vaccinated?
Employees must receive the vaccination by Tuesday, Dec. 3, 2013.

If you are on the East Baltimore campus, vaccinations are available the following dates and locations:
Church Office Building, 98 N. Broadway, Rm 407
Friday, Nov. 29 from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Monday, Dec. 2 from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.
Tuesday, Dec. 3 from 7:30 a.m. - 2 p.m.
Wednesday, Dec. 4 - Friday, Dec. 6 from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.

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Monday, Dec. 2 - Friday, Dec. 6 from 7:30 a.m. - 4 p.m.

For more information, visit hopkinsmedicine.org/mandatory_flu_vaccination/index.html.

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Debbie November 27, 2013 at 12:55 pm

The answer is that one hospital has had a patient. However, the MD state Health Dept has reported to the CDC Maryland is starting to experience some localized flu activity-one of 15 states now starting to experience localized activity!

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Janet November 27, 2013 at 6:27 am

Has any of the Johns Hopkins Health System hospitals treated any patients for flu this season?

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