Cape Cod Hospital Nurses Object to Flu Shot Requirement

nursesBARNSTABLE – Cape Cod Healthcare’s nurses union is opposed to the company’s new policy to require all employees, students, volunteers and vendors to be vaccinated against the flu by December 1.

Cape Cod Healthcare is the parent company of both Cape Cod Hospital and Falmouth Hospital.

Massachusetts Nurses Association spokesman David Schildmeier said the policy is not needed.

“Healthcare providers are required to be offered the vaccine, provided with education about the benefits of the vaccine and then allowed to make their personal decision about whether to take it,” he said.

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If employees refuse to get a flu shot, they are required to wear a surgical mask at all times in patient care areas.

The union is suggesting that nurses who are not vaccinated be required to wear a mask when in close proximity to patients.

“We think that’s a reasonable approach that has been adopted by other hospitals,” he said.

The new policy takes affect on December 1.