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Old 07-02-2011, 09:49 PM   #1096
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Join Date: Jan 2010
Location: New Zealand
Posts: 4,622

Originally Posted by NwP View Post
The hospital where I work has a new policy regarding the flu vaccine. Before this, we could decline the flu shot (the reasons included religion, convenience, and some others that escape me) without repercussions. It was strongly encouraged that we all get the shot, but that was it.

But now we can no longer decline except with a note from our doctor or religious leader. I just wondered how your average atheist (exhibit A: me) would get a signature, as I don't have a religious leader. It won't be an issue since I get haven't missed a flu shot in years, but it did make me curious.
I am very surprised that the flu shot is now considered practically mandatory. The flu shot only protects you against two or three of the worst strains of the influenza virus and these which are not necessarily the most common ones. If you are an averagely healthy adult, not elderly or with a compromised immune system then you actually aren't hugely at risk. Also having the shot often gives people a false sense of security as they think they are immune to the 'flu in general and that is not the case.
However I take your point that as an atheist you don't have the same options for opting out of the shot should you decide you don't want it, and that doesn't seem fair to me.
To live a creative life, we must lose our fear of being wrong. Joseph Chilton Pearce
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