Creative Commons/Daniel Paquet

Creative Commons/Daniel Paquet

The GEM Debate: A Matter Of Health And Safety?
Should She Lose Her Job Over This? (POLL)

If you’ve ever had the flu before, you know the dreaded symptoms: fever, aches, chills, tiredness, and a cold that’s no ordinary cold. The flu knocks you down and you might decide to get vaccinated every year with the hopes that you never experience it again.

There are pros to getting the vaccine: you can cut your risk of infection by at least 70%, experts say that both the seasonal and H1N1 vaccines are perfectly safe, and if you get the shot early enough, you’ll be protected for the entire season.

There are also cons to flu vaccination: there’s a chance you could still end up with the flu; you might experience some side effects like swelling, redness, and soreness; and flu vaccines are made with thimerosal, a preservative that contains ethylmercury, a substance some people have some concerns about.

Dreonna Breton, a nurse in Lancaster, Penn., was fired after she informed her bosses that she would not receive the flu vaccine. She refused it because she is three months pregnant with her second child. After having had two miscarriages in the last year, she’s not willing to do anything that she feels might put her pregnancy at risk.

But the vaccine is a mandatory requirement of her employer, Horizons Healthcare Services. Understandably, they are concerned about protecting patients, employees, and the community from serious infections. Also understandably, Breton is concerned about her pregnancy experiencing complications.

Related: Guest Posting: Hear Me Out! Why I Am NOT Following The Prescribed Vaccination Schedule

Breton offered to wear a mask, but Horizons says that vaccination is a condition of employment. Exemptions can be made, but Breton did not qualify. Without a medical reason for an exemption, she was terminated.

The Centers for Disease Control recommends the flu vaccine for everyone who is at least six months old and this recommendation has been in place since 2010. The CDC places more emphasis on certain people getting the vaccine. Pregnant women fall into that category. In fact, there are experts who would argue that Breton is putting herself at more risk and that her chances of experiencing adverse effects are very small.

Related: Our Story Begins: Tackling The Vaccination Consternation

What do you think? Should Breton have been given an exemption over termination? Take the poll and share your thoughts.

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