Health Professional News

Children’s Minnesota recognized for efforts to protect patients from influenza

Children’s St. Paul campus was among 69 hospitals and nursing homes from around the state recognized by the Minnesota Department of Health (MDH) for achieving high influenza vaccination rates among facility employees during the 2018-19 flu season.

During last year’s season, 93% of all employees working at the St. Paul hospital received influenza vaccinations. The Minneapolis campus was not far behind with a rate of 91%. In addition to aiming for 90% or higher influenza vaccination rates among employees, participating FluSafe facilities also worked to address a barrier to vaccination during the past season.

“Our patients’ health is our top priority,” said Patsy Stinchfield, senior director of infection prevention & control. “Participating in the FluSafe program helps us increase employee influenza vaccination rates and prevent flu from spreading to our patients. We also want all of our employees to be as healthy as possible during flu season.”

The FluSafe program aims to get all health care personnel at hospitals and nursing homes in Minnesota, except those with medical exemptions, vaccinated against influenza each season. According to state health officials, unvaccinated health care workers can potentially pass highly contagious influenza to their patients, many of whom are at high risk for complications from influenza.

Health care facilities participating in the FluSafe program receive guidance and access to tools and promotional materials from MDH and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) to help them increase their influenza vaccination rates. The facilities record and document their vaccination rates through the state’s immunization information system, the Minnesota Immunization Information Connection (MIIC). More information on the FluSafe program can be found here.

Mark your calendar

With the flu season right around the corner, review the influenza vaccination clinic schedule and plan to get your vaccine to protect yourself, your family, patients and coworkers.

Review additional information and reminders about the 2019-2020 flu season here.

Kaitlyn Kamleiter