How I Lost my Job Over the Flu Vaccine from Mindful Mama

October 9, 2013 · 19 comments

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The flu shot.

There is potentially not more controversy, policy or unbelievable misinformation over one vaccine then there is this one.

The progressing push for the flu vaccine has been mounting over the last few decades to a point where people’s jobs and lives are honestly at risk.

My name’s Lauren, I’ve been registered nurse for 6 years, and I lost my job because I refused to get the flu vaccine.

 

Why Did I Refuse To Get the Flu Shot?

 

Historically the safety and efficacy of this shot is at best questionable. There is a large body of scientific literature piling high shedding light on the true efficacy of the flu shot. If you get the flu shot, it’s possible you aren’t even less likely to get the flu¹, and you are possibly more likely to get a worse flu strain in the present season if you’ve gotten the flu shot in previous years (source and source). The flu death rates given in the media include death from pneumonia and other diagnoses related to the flu (most often bacterial pneumonia). In past years only 1-4% of ‘reported flu deaths’ were from the actual flu virus. (source)

It appears the flu is most INEFFECTIVE for the elderly and children under two (source), which was researched by an independent researching board called the Cochrane Summaries. After reviewing 36 flu vaccine trials they also concluded:

-Influenza vaccines have a modest effect in reducing influenza symptoms and working days lost. There is no evidence that they affect complications, such as pneumonia, or transmission. (source)

-In average conditions (partially matching vaccine) 100 people need to be vaccinated to avoid one set of influenza symptoms.²

With the complexity of ‘choosing the right strains’ and manufacturing a different vaccine that is effective each year, most research shows less than impressive results of actually preventing the flu in the people who get the vaccine. I won’t even discuss getting the flu from the vaccine, because we all know ‘that’s not possible’ according to vaccine authorities…

Long Term Injury Connected to Flu Vaccine

 

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Reported moderate reactions to influenza vaccine include fever, local reactions (pain, redness, swelling at the site of the injection), headache, fatigue, sore throat, nasal congestion, cough, joint and muscle pain, and nausea. Reported serious complications include brain inflammation, convulsions, Bell’s palsy, limb paralysis, neuropathy, shock, wheezing/asthma and other breathing problems. Guillian Barre Syndrome (GBS) is a disabling neurological disorder that involves temporary or permanent paralysis that can lead to death and has been causally related to influenza vaccinations. (NVIC.org)

It’s amazing that the ‘powers that be’ can forcibly mandate a vaccine, with many potential adverse effects and questionable efficacy, upon any group of people, including health care workers. Here is a video of a nursing professor who developed GBS after the flu vaccine in 2008; she is permanently disabled now with full body paralysis.

As of July 2012, there have been more than 84,000 reports of reactions, hospitalizations, injuries and deaths following influenza vaccinations made to the federal Vaccine Adverse Events Reporting System (VAERS), including over 1,000 related deaths and over 1,600 cases of GBS. (NVIC.org)

What is the motivation behind mandating the flu vaccine?

The agenda behind mandating the flu shot for health care workers seems reasonable at first glance. However, one cannot ignore the lack of proof that the flu shot successfully prevents the flu. Nor can you ignore the safety issues behind the evolving development, and lack of solid safety testing on the new flu shot yearly.

 

Other issues to consider are the realities that one can carry the flu virus in there nostrils, REGARDLESS of whether or not they have had the vaccine. There is no way to eliminate the circulation of the very prevalent flu virus in any setting, let alone a hospital.

 

It is also interesting to note that the popular nasal flu vaccine states that the virus is shed from the vaccinated individual for up to 3 weeks (source), and therefore, they could unknowingly infect those that are around them with the flu, especially immunocompromised individuals (do you know how many people would be considered immunocompromised?! You probably have at least 1 in your family). (You should know, I nicely asked the hospital that was mandating me to get the flu vaccine if they make the people who get the flu mist nasal vaccine to wear a mask for the 3 weeks after they get it, with the all-important goal of protecting patients, surprisingly, they said that is not a policy they have.)

 

The push for health care workers to be MANDATED to get the flu shot has been strengthened more each year. Firing nurses who choose not to vaccine is becoming a common practice for hospitals instituting a ‘mandatory annual flu vaccine.’ (source)

 What Can One Do to Safely Prevent Influenza?

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As soon as you take a peak outside the tiny box of modern medicine and its approach to preventing the flu, you will be amazed at how much you CAN DO SAFELY to prevent to flu. Dr. Mercola, a leading natural health MD, has this comprehensive list on what foods to focus on and which steps to take to effectively protect yourself from the flu.

 

  • FOODS: Raw milk, pastured eggs, grass-fed beef, fermented foods, coconut/coconut oil, organic vegetables, garlic,mushrooms, turmeric, oregano, cinnamon, cloves.
  • SUPPLEMENTS: Vit D (probably MOST important) vit C, zinc, oregano oil, propolis and elderberry extract, animal based omega-3.
  • LIFESTYLE: Plenty of rest, lots of water, homemade chicken broth, avoiding antibiotics, avoiding sugar and processed foods, optimizing your gut flora, regular exercise, avoiding hospitals, lowering stress. (source)

 

If you follow these principles for a healthy flu season, your overall health this winter will be PHENOMONAL. And it IS possible! The first four years of winters since I’ve had children were AWFUL. Colds, stomach viruses…everything possible we got and kept for a while. This past winter as my family was refined sugar free/grain-free and eating really nutrient-dense immune-boosting foods….WAS INCREDIBLE! We had very few viruses, and after our bodies mounted their defense, our symptoms were gone in no time! It was UNBELIEVABLE. I don’t know if I would have believed it if I hadn’t seen the power of GOOD food be so ACTIVE in our bodies. I’m not even going to flinch at sickness this winter, as I am assured our bodies have the resources to effectively fight whatever we might face.

Losing My Job Because of my Vaccine Concerns

This is where my story comes in.

I have recently moved to the state of NY, and after getting my NY nursing license, in normal process I applied for a couple different nursing jobs in area hospitals. I was excited to hear that I got the job offer for a position I really wanted in labor and delivery. I am a doula and have worked at a birth center, and am so passionate about supporting laboring women in such an important time in their lives.

 

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I proceeded from the interview with officially accepting the job offer, filling out all the paperwork, getting everything set up for me to start hospital orientation the next week…..and then came the ‘employee health’ physical exam. The kind doctor asked me the typical questions about my health, did a physical exam and said I was in great health and he saw no reasons why I shouldn’t do this job well physically. ONE PROBLEM. I shared with him my history of autoimmune disease, and my serious hesitations of the safety and efficacy of the flu shot (among others they wanted me to get).

 

This is where the drama began. Calls were made to people somewhere high in authority, making hospital policy, to see if there was any possible way I could work without these vaccines. This year this hospital instituted a mandatory flu vaccine, with NO DECLINATIONS allowed. I discussed this until I was out of words, to see if there was any other options left for me, as I could not in good faith proceed with the medical interventions they were telling me I had to do if I wanted this job.

 

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NO. The answer was no, no, no, NO across the board. This year they were not turning back, no masks, no medical exemptions (unless of course ‘you almost died from the shot’, then they would give you one). NO OTHER OPTIONS.

The job I was licensed for, qualified to do, good at, and really excited about, was over.

I think they were shocked to see me actually leave, but I explained kindly, but firmly that I was not going to compromise my health or philosophical and religious beliefs to appease their hospital policy.

As I put down everything I had already done with this facility and left, the door closed behind me, and I sighed in complete disappointment at the direction vaccine policy has taken this country. I have been studying vaccine issues for 5 years, and this should have come as no shock to me, but I HAD JUST LOST MY JOB BECAUSE I WOULDN’T GET VACCINATED, and I was stunned.

 Future Unclear for Mandated Flu Vaccine

The way that institutions use vaccines mandates as a way to control people with their shaky agenda is NEVER okay. How have we as the free people of this country, allowed such an unjust practice to be tolerated and FOLLOWED without appropriate questioning. WE are the directors of our health, and with adequate, balanced information people should be making these DECISIONS for themselves and their families, not having them be made for them by policy makers wherever.

 

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Here is a sample letter for those are you health care workers that would like to avoid the flu vaccine and hopefully not lose your job. (Dr. Tenpenny) Here is a reputable vaccine injury lawyer with great information on vaccine exemptions. (Alan Phillips, JD)

In 2009, 60% of healthcare workers refused to get the flu vaccine. In 2012-2013, 30% of healthcare workers didn’t get the flu shot (source). Surprisingly, the CDC does not yet recommend mandated flu vaccines for health care workers, or any adults for that matter (source).

As usual, further study on flu vaccine effectiveness is necessary. There are a lot of conflicting data available. However, the growing number of studies showing low overall effectiveness, waning immunity and a negative effect of prior-year vaccination cast doubt on influenza vaccine policies and strategies, especially when influenza vaccinations now are being required as a condition of employment for health care workers. NVIC.0rg

The Morale of the Story

Do I regret my decision? Not once. Do I grieve my lost opportunity and the present situation in regards to vaccine mandates? Often. I urge you to continue making informed vaccine decisions, and to never, ever make a vaccine choice out of compulsion or coercive propaganda. These decisions have vast ramifications, and no one should take away your personal responsibility in making them for yourselves and your families.

While people definitely disappointed me in this situation, God was faithful to provide another job for me. I ended up taking a job at a different hospital that has not yet fully implemented mandatory flu vaccination. My ‘out’ is signing a declination form and wearing a mask with my patients from December-May. Good thing I only work once or twice a week because wearing a mask while caring for patients is not fun.

 

How ironic that without the vaccine this flu season I will truly be viewed as a threat to patient safety. In reality my strong immune system, healthy lifestyle choices and overall health make me a much more consistent protector of patient safety than the average employee that simply gets the yearly flu shot.

If you are interested in reading more information that I have compiled on vaccine issues, check out these articles: 10 Do’s and Don’ts of Vaccination, 10 Reasons Vaccines are Not Questioned, Vaccination Information

I lost my job because I wouldn’t get vaccinated.

REALITY: Sometimes being MINDFUL will cost you.

Sources: Please research for yourself this important topic further.

Mindful Mama,
Lauren

A simple person believes anything, but a prudent person gives thought to their steps.

100_6481-e1380731646917-203x300 Lauren is an RN by profession and a researching mom (5, 4, 1 year old) by passion. Over the last 4 years she has brought her family from eating mostly the SAD, along with experiencing its many unhealthy consequences, to a vibrantly healthy family who is healing using REAL FOOD.She is presently in a nutritional therapy program so she can help others do the same for their families.
She is truly in her niche when she has the opportunity to teach woman more of what it looks like to be a Mindful Mama. Visit her @ http://mindfulmama.org

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{ 17 comments… read them below or add one }

1 Jill October 10, 2013 at 9:32 am

Few topics make my blood boil like this one. My husband is in his second year of dealing with the flu vaccine mandate at his hospital, and it will be his second year of wearing a mask. Only 5 out of 1800 employees were given exemptions, and I am just shocked at how easy it has been for hospitals and this policy (which is tied to federal reimbursements for hospitals) to run people over. Truly, if every employee who didn’t want the vaccine stood their ground and refused, it could never have gone this far. No hospital/healthcare system can operate with only 1/2 staff.

This flu vaccine mandate issue was the final straw for us–my husband has been in healthcare for 20 years and is currently director of business development for therapy services at his hospital, but he is now working towards leaving the industry altogether. We’d been disillusioned with conventional healthcare for years, with how everything centers around and is run by drug companies, but the industry now “going after its own” for drug company profit sort of epitomized the corruption of the whole machine. He is currently taking a night class in Organic Chemistry, and in the spring will take Biochemistry–the last 2 prerequisites for Naturopathic College. He would rather be part of a solution to this mess and help fill a gaping void in healthcare than continue contributing to something that’s become so bent and twisted that it’s lost its soul.

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2 lauren October 11, 2013 at 6:18 pm

Wow Jill- So sorry to hear your husbands story with this. It is SO frustrating. So encouraging that he is taking that directing all of that insight hes gained into this broken system towards actually helping people. I bet he is SO excited about the Naturopathic program. Im amazed he’s lasted 20 years!! Ive only been at it for 6 year and you could definitely call me disillusioned. I am in a nutritional therapy program right now and words can’t express how excited I am to see people feel better, without causing more damage to them. I’m curious to see how this flu season goes with me wearing a mask….maybe another post will come out of it ;o) Blessings as you seek health naturally for your family.

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3 Lisa October 12, 2013 at 7:53 pm

Lauren:
How very disappointing and in their blind compliance they lost such a wonderful loving, skilled nurse! This is what is happening in my field too. Teachers are not to go against the establishment regardless of ethical concerns of exessive standardized testing reliance and federal and highly questionable state mandates rammed through at middle of night hours. I will not go on and on as there is much much more but know I pray for you and respect your intelligence and admire your patience and willing ethical stand so much! You are an inspiration! Blessings!

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4 Angela October 14, 2013 at 10:18 am

Good for you for taking a stand. I am so happy to hear that you were able to get another job and I’m sad and dismayed to hear that you had to go through all of that drama. My in-laws and Mom both work at a local hospital and I’m just waiting for them to implement this policy. My in-laws have been working there since the 80s! Fortunately, they are about at retirement age so they may be able to go that route but not many other folks have that option.

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5 Jill October 16, 2013 at 11:21 am

I’m sending up a prayer for you that you’re able to find a job in your field with an employer who is far more rational. I say it’s a conspiracy. As you – and surely most other healthcare workers know darn well – the best way to prevent flu with with proper diet, healthy lifestyle habits, and good hygiene practices. But tranditional healthcare facilities are so in cahoots with the drug companies that I’m sure it’s the drug pushers that encourage these forced mandates.

I feel so sorry for people like you that are called to be healers who have to make terrible choices like this just to keep a job.

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6 Contemplative Fitness October 16, 2013 at 8:41 pm

“I think they were shocked to see me actually leave, but I explained kindly, but firmly that I was not going to compromise my health or philosophical and religious beliefs to appease their hospital policy.” = Hero! I bow down…

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7 Jennifer at Purposeful Nutrition October 18, 2013 at 8:36 pm

wow, quite a story. I am also an RN but have not worked in the field for 11 years. I would get fired too as I am now passionate about not getting that vaccine either.
Thanks so much for sharing at Healing With Food Friday. It isn’t quite a food related post but it is certainly health related. Glad to have you join us.

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8 Alicia October 20, 2013 at 11:11 am

I am an RN working in a facility that mandates the flu vaccine. I suffer with taking it for my family. Without my job we would not survive. I understand that to that without me, they would also not survive. It is a sad world we have now. I totally hate that they mandate what we put in our bodies. I am currently looking for a new position in a different office.

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9 Dawn @ Peeling Back the Onion Layers October 25, 2013 at 10:49 am

Thanks so much for sharing this with us at Healing With Food Friday! http://peelingbacktheonionlayers.com/healing-with-food-friday-7/ We hope you will make it back this week! :)

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10 Rachael November 6, 2013 at 4:15 pm

Take heart, there are others that are of the same mind. Your courage is a reflection of what kind of a Doula you are. Anyone would be lucky to have you as part of their birthing.

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11 mrsp December 6, 2013 at 10:33 pm

Hi,
I have been working in HC for 25 years, at my current employer for 17 yrs. We had a policy change 2 years ago, and I was required to wear a mask during flu season, and I did. Last year we needed a religious or medical exemption which I applied for and was denied. Not one religious exemption was granted. I lost my job in radiology and had 3 weeks to scramble to find a job that didn’t have pt care. I was able to get a non-education required job making $17,000 less than before. I took it to tide me over until I finished my Bachelors degree. In the meantime I filed an EEOC complaint and am now waiting for the investigation to be complete. I had 1 flu shot in my life as a student, and I had ill effects from it, and never got another again. Since 1997 I have held a religious conviction and will not get one again. In a country where freedoms abound for everything else, it is sinful that HC workers can not be granted freedom for this. I encourage all who face this to file an EEOC complaint. The law needs to protect us, because the flu shot certainly will not, and it has NO guarantees.

Incidently, the flu shot mandate is being pushed due to HC reform. Facilities that don’t have 90% compliance of their workers next year, will potentially lose medicare/medicaid reimbursements. This is why the flu shot is pushed, not patient safety. IF it was truly about patient safety, then everyone who walked into a facility during flu season, including visitors, and employees (even vacinnated ones) would be required to wear a mask. I have Never had the flu, but I have had several co-workers who have had the flu even after getting the shot. Hence, they have infected more patients than I have ever done….. Any one interested in corresponding with me is welcome to email me.

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12 Kathy Manzo December 18, 2013 at 12:50 pm

Hi Lauren! I, too, lost my job at AOMC for refusing the flu shot/mask. I believe my body is God’s temple and just don’t understand how sooo many people don’t get that the flu shots have sooo much bad in them. Anyway, I’m on Facebook Kathy Cole Manzo if you would ever like to chat. Btw, your website is AMAZING!!! God bless! :)

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13 Stephanie Brenner January 11, 2014 at 8:15 pm

Thank you for a concise, yet easy to read article about why the flu vaccine isn’t everyone’s first choice. All these sources included will certainly help me educate people who have been blinded by Big Pharma. When I was pregnant, I was lucky my OB/GYN was very up to date on her vaccination information. She didn’t get the flu shot when she was pregnant and she suggested I do the same. After I had my daughter, my doctor’s office refused to give anyone under the age of 2 a vaccine b/c their office has seen 3 reactions in children. They told me this after I refused the combination shots and flu shot. I can’t help but wonder how many doctors DON’T tell their patients what they know and I feel lucky mine did tell me. Again, thank you :)

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14 Jill January 11, 2014 at 9:20 pm

Hi Stephanie,
Thanks for sharing. You have uncommon doctors so feel lucky as most will never tell patients NOT to get a vaccine.

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15 Carrie April 13, 2014 at 12:36 am

I just lost my job as a RN on a post-op floor after 11 yrs. I am still very angry as I feel like I wasted my time and money going to college to do something I am no longer allowed to do without compromising all my principles. I miss my work, I am was good a my job and that upsets me even more. I became a RN after I was hospitalized and had horrible care. I know I can’t care for everyone but knowing that I gave so much care to the people I did have the pleasure of caring for made me feel like I was doing all I could to help make a difference in this world. And now that is gone. I’m very fortunate that I was financially able to leave my job, but it not the money that I miss, it’s the feeling of knowing you helped someone when they are scared and vulnerable, and you did whatever it is that person needed to help them get through it and not just treat them like a “disease” that needs to be hurried up and stabilized so we can fill their bed with another paying customer! It’s not healthcare anymore, it’s business. I didn’t become a RN to make money for hospitals, I became a RN to care for people, but it seems money is more important – don’t get all your federal funding if all your employees don’t get the flu shot! But hey it’s to protect the patients, really then why isn’t every visitor stopped and asked for proof of shot or made to wear a mask? I don’t kiss and hug my patients, but their friends and family do! Oh that’s right because we can’t force drugs on patients, but it’s seems to ok to force healthcare workers. And sadly they will prevail, because not every RN is so lucky and they had to take the shot, because if they don’t work they don’t eat.

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16 Jill April 13, 2014 at 11:19 am

Hi Carrie,
So sorry to hear that you had to lose your job to protect your health. It is a sad state of affairs. You sound like a fantastic nurse.

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17 LLA April 28, 2014 at 8:44 pm

Hi Lauren! I work at a different location under your hospital’s umbrella and our office employees who refuse the vaccine have to wear a mask 24/7 unless they’re eating. Do you only have to wear the mask while performing direct patient care?

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