As flu season begins, help protect patients, families and colleagues

September 22, 2017  //  FOUND IN: Updates & Resources,

Flu do you love?

Everyone at Michigan Medicine has a responsibility to protect patients, families and each other from the spread of disease. That’s why Headlines wants to know who you will help protect from the influenza virus!

Will it be your children, your spouse or your pets? Perhaps you will get the vaccine for your neighbors down the street or your grandparents who you’ll visit over the holidays. Or maybe you’ll get the flu shot for yourself, your patients and their family members.

Email a photo of you with the people you love to headlines@med.umich.edu for the chance to be featured in an upcoming Headlines story and to win a prize.

What you need to know this flu season

Under the organization’s influenza vaccination policy, faculty, staff, students and volunteers must receive their annual vaccine by Dec. 1, 2017 or receive an approved exemption. Those with an approved exemption or declination will be required to wear a mask in patient care areas for the entire flu season.

AFSCME and MNA/UMPNC bargaining unit members should refer to their union contracts and memoranda of understanding pertaining to flu vaccinations for additional information. The MOU for AFSCME employees is available here and the MOU for MNA/UMPNC is available here. Per the MNA/UMPNC MOU, bargaining unit members may receive an approved medical or religious exemption or decline the vaccination for other reasons.

There are many opportunities to get your flu shot at Michigan Medicine, including free flu fairs in October and November. Vaccines are also available at Occupational Health Services in the Med Inn Building or from clinical unit flu liaisons. Make sure to have your ID badge when you arrive and you’ll receive a sticker for your ID badge after getting the shot.

If you get your flu shot at your doctor’s office, pharmacy or any other location outside of Michigan Medicine, make sure to get documentation on paper with your name on it. Give this to your department’s compliance contact so they can record it and give you a sticker for your ID badge. Please be aware that, in accordance with guidelines from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, flu mist is not an acceptable alternative to the flu vaccination.

If you have a religious belief or medical condition that prevents you from receiving the flu vaccine, you may submit an exemption form to Occupational Health Services for review by Nov. 1, 2017.

Later this year, the Infection Prevention and Epidemiology team will notify everyone when flu season begins, which will alert those who received an exemption or declination to start wearing a mask before they enter clinical areas.

More information about this year’s flu prevention program, including Frequently Asked Questions, is available on the organization’s flu website.

On behalf of everyone at Michigan Medicine, thank you for doing your part to protect the community from the spread of the flu!

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