Griffin Hospital requires flu shots for workers, reports full compliance

All Griffin Hospital employees have complied with a new policy requiring them to get flu shots, the Derby Hospital announced Wednesday.

Between Sept. 27 and Nov. 1, 1,275 full and part-time employees got the flu vaccine, which was provided free. Volunteers, students and physicians were also required to get vaccinated.

The hospital allowed exemptions for 17 people who could document that they have a severe egg allergy, a past severe reaction to the flu vaccine, or a history of Guillain-Barre syndrome within six weeks of getting a flu vaccine. Those who got an exemption must wear masks while in patient care areas.

“All of these caregivers who interact with our patients are at a higher risk for contracting flu than the general population, and if infected, can transmit the virus to people who are medically vulnerable,” Griffin President Patrick Charmel said. “Their cooperation will not only ensure we are protecting our patients, but will also protect them and reduce the risk of the spread of the flu to their family.”

The hospital announced the policy last October, and required all new employees during the 2010 flu season receive a flu vaccine.

Earlier this month, Connecticut Children’s Medical Center announced that more than 2,900 employees, community physicians, contractors and volunteers got flu vaccines after the Hartford hospital instituted a policy requiring all employees to get vaccinated. The hospital planned to terminate five employees who did not get vaccinated by the deadline.