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Recommended Vaccines for Healthcare Workers

Healthcare workers

Healthcare workers (HCWs) are at risk for exposure to serious, and sometimes deadly, diseases. If you work directly with patients or handle material that could spread infection, you should get appropriate vaccines to reduce the chance that you will get or spread vaccine-preventable diseases. Protect yourself, your patients, and your family members. Make sure you are up-to-date with recommended vaccines.

Healthcare workers include physicians, nurses, emergency medical personnel, dental professionals and students, medical and nursing students, laboratory technicians, pharmacists, hospital volunteers, and administrative staff.

Vaccines Recommendations in brief
Hepatitis B If you don’t have documented evidence of a complete hepB vaccine series, or if you don’t have an up-to-date blood test that shows you are immune to hepatitis B (i.e., no serologic evidence of immunity or prior vaccination) then you should
  • Get the 3-dose series (dose #1 now, #2 in 1 month, #3 approximately 5 months after #2).
  • Get anti-HBs serologic tested 1–2 months after dose #3.
Flu (Influenza)

Get 1 dose of influenza vaccine annually.

MMR (Measles, Mumps, & Rubella)

If you were born in 1957 or later and have not had the MMR vaccine, or if you don’t have an up-to-date blood test that shows you are immune to measles or mumps (i.e., no serologic evidence of immunity or prior vaccination), get 2 doses of MMR (1 dose now and the 2nd dose at least 28 days later).
If you were born in 1957 or later and have not had the MMR vaccine, or if you don’t have an up-to-date blood test that shows you are immune to rubella, only 1 dose of MMR is recommended. However, you may end up receiving 2 doses, because the rubella component is in the combination vaccine with measles and mumps.

For HCWs born before 1957, see the MMR ACIP vaccine recommendations.

Varicella (Chickenpox)

If you have not had chickenpox (varicella), if you haven’t had varicella vaccine, or if you don’t have an up-to-date blood test that shows you are immune to varicella (i.e., no serologic evidence of immunity or prior vaccination) get 2 doses of varicella vaccine, 4 weeks apart.

Tdap (Tetanus, Diphtheria, Pertussis)

Get a one-time dose of Tdap as soon as possible if you have not received Tdap previously (regardless of when previous dose of Td was received).

Get Td boosters every 10 years thereafter.

Pregnant HCWs need to get a dose of Tdap during each pregnancy.

Meningococcal

Those who are routinely exposed to isolates of N. meningitidis should get one dose.

To learn more about these diseases and the benefits and potential risks associated with the vaccines, read the Vaccine Information Statements (VIS).

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Published Recommendations

healthcare worker getting vaccinated.

State Immunization Laws

  • State Immunization Laws for Healthcare Workers and Patients
    Summarizes state immunization laws for healthcare workers, correctional inmates/residents, hospital inpatients, and developmentally disabled facility residents; search for information on vaccine administration, assessment, and Hepatitis B reporting.

Resources for More Information

Resources for Those Vaccinating HCWs

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