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Legislative Workgroup
Workgroup at table

Contact: Carlos.Quintanilla@state.or.us or 971-673-0287


Workgroup Statement

We support annual influenza vaccinations among health care workers as an important way to protect our patients, our communities and ourselves. Influenza vaccination of health care workers is proven to reduce death and disease in clinical settings and in communities1. In 2009, about half of Oregon health care workers were vaccinated for influenza2. This turnout is below the levels needed to prevent an outbreak. The health of our patients, friends and families are at stake.

Together, we are taking action. We are:

  1. Actively promoting annual influenza vaccinations of all Oregon health care workers;
  2. Joining forces to educate all health care workers regarding the benefits of influenza vaccination;
  3. Monitoring vaccine coverage in hospitals and long term care facilities through facility use of declination forms and aggregate reporting;
  4. Measuring patient safety by a facility’s health care worker vaccination rate;
  5. Evaluating Oregon health care worker concerns about influenza vaccinations in order to improve our communications about vaccine safety and efficacy;
  6. Celebrating institutional and organizational successes through a web-based honor roll; and
  7. Meeting periodically to review progress and set objectives for increases in health care worker influenza vaccination rates over the next two years.

Influenza vaccination saves lives. Health care workers care for vulnerable patients in hospitals, medical practices, long term care facilities, and in homes across the State. Annually vaccinated health care workers can stop the spread of disease in their clinics and facilities. Our patients deserve the best care possible. Promoting patient safety through an annual health care worker vaccination program provides a firm foundation for advancing this goal.

1 See Joint Commission Monograph at http://www.jcrinc.com/fluchallenge

2 Preliminary analysis of Behavioral Risk Factor Survey Surveillance, Oregon Immunization Program.



Legislation

ORS 433.407 - 433.416
433.407 Definitions for ORS 433.407 to 433.423. As used in ORS 433.407 to 433.423 unless the context requires otherwise:
  1. "Authority" means the Oregon Health Authority.
  2. "Health care facility" means a facility as defined in ORS 442.015 and a mental health facility, alcohol treatment facility or drug treatment facility licensed or operated under ORS chapter 426 or 430.
  3. "Worker" means a person who is licensed or certified to provide health care under ORS chapter 677, 678, 679, 680, 684 or 685 or ORS 682.216, an employee of a health care facility, of a licensed health care provider or of a clinical laboratory as defined in ORS 438.010, a firefighter, a law enforcement officer as defined in ORS 414.805, a corrections officer or a parole and probation officer. [1989 c.949 §2; 1993 c.196 §8; 2005 c.264 §24; 2009 c.595 §671; 2011 c.720 §195]

Note: 433.407 to 433.423 were enacted into law by the Legislative Assembly but were not added to or made a part of ORS chapter 433 or any series therein by legislative action. See Preface to Oregon Revised Statutes for further explanation.

433.411 Legislative finding. The Legislative Assembly finds that by reason of and in the course of their employment, health care workers and emergency response employees, are subject to exposure to infectious diseases, that this exposure is not fully preventable due to the nature of their duties and that health care workers should be informed of exposure to infectious diseases as soon as is practicable to initiate appropriate medical care and to prevent exposing other persons to infectious diseases. [1989 c.949 §1]

433.416 When employer to provide preventive immunization.

  1. An employer of a health care worker at risk of contracting an infectious disease in the course of employment shall provide to the worker preventive immunization for infectious disease if such preventive immunization is available and is medically appropriate.
  2. Such preventive immunization shall be provided by the employer at no cost to the worker.
  3. A worker shall not be required as a condition of work to be immunized under this section, unless such immunization is otherwise required by federal or state law, rule or regulation. [1989 c.949 §3]


Vaccine Recommendations

Vaccines recommended by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) for healthcare workers include:

  • Hepatitis B
  • Influenza
  • MMR
  • Pertussis
  • Varicella
  • Meningococcal (only high risk - anatomic or functional asplenia; persistent complement component deficiencies; microbiology lab workers)