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Hepatitis B (HBV) Immunization

vaccine injection

Getting Vaccinated

The hepatitis B vaccination is a non-infectious, vaccine prepared from recombinant yeast cultures, rather than human blood or plasma. There is no risk of contamination from other bloodborne pathogens nor is there any chance of developing HBV from the vaccine.

The standard requires employers to offer the vaccination series to all workers who have occupational exposure. Examples of workers who may have occupational exposure include, but are not limited to, healthcare workers, emergency responders, morticians, first-aid personnel, correctional officers and laundry workers in hospitals and commercial laundries that service healthcare or public safety institutions. The vaccine and vaccination must be offered at no cost to the worker and at a reasonable time and place.

Training

Employers must ensure that all occupationally exposed workers are trained about the vaccine and vaccination, including efficacy, safety, method of administration, and the benefits of vaccination. Workers also must be informed that the vaccine and vaccination are offered at no cost to the worker.

The vaccination must be offered after the worker is trained and within 10 days of initial assignment to a job where there is occupational exposure, unless the worker has previously received the vaccine series, antibody testing has revealed that the worker is immune, or the vaccine is contraindicated for medical reasons.

1. The HBV vaccination must be offered within _____ after a worker has received initial training.

a. six months
b. within 10 days
c. a reasonable period of time
d. at least one week

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The HBV Vaccination Series

immunization

The hepatitis B vaccine is usually given as 3 injections over a 6-month period.

The hepatitis B vaccine is very effective in protecting against the hepatitis B virus. Approximately 90 percent of people who receive the vaccine will become fully immune to the virus. The entire series of shots is required to provide full immunity, and there are very few adverse reactions.

The Vaccination Schedule

The first injection can be administered at any given time. The second injection must be given at least one month after the first, and the third injection must be given six months after the first.

2. How many injections are given in the HBV vaccination series?

a. 4
b. 6
c. 3
d. 2

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Administering Vaccinations

The vaccine must be administered according to the recommendations of the U.S. Public Health Service (USPHS) current at the time the procedure takes place. To ensure immunity, it is important for individuals to complete the entire course of vaccination contained in the USPHS recommendations.

medical professional

A licensed physician or other healthcare professional will perform or supervise the vaccinations.

Your employer does not have to offer you the vaccination series if you have previously received the complete series or have tested as immune to HBV.

There are currently two vaccines used to prevent hepatitis B infection in the United States. Neither vaccine contains blood products. You cannot get Hepatitis B from these vaccines.

3. Why is it important for individuals to complete the entire course of the HBV vaccination series?

a. To maintain compliance
b. To comply with CDC rules
c. To ensure immunity
d. To keep their job

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Declining a Vaccination

Employers must ensure that workers who decline vaccination sign a declination form. The purpose of this is to encourage greater participation in the vaccination program by stating that a worker declining the vaccination remains at risk of acquiring hepatitis B. The form also states that if a worker initially declines to receive the vaccine, but at a later date decides to accept it, the employer is required to make it available, at no cost, provided the worker is still occupationally exposed.

Scenario

Tony had decided earlier to decline the hepatitis B vaccination, but has changed his mind and now wants the vaccination.

Will Tony be permitted to get the vaccine and does he have to pay for it?

Yes.

Tony may get the vaccine at any time at no cost to him as long as he is still occupationally exposed.

4. Which of the following is FALSE if an employee declines a vaccination, but later decides to accept it?

a. The employer must pay for the vaccination
b. The employer must provide the vaccination by law
c. The employee must still be occupationally exposed
d. The employee must pay for the vaccination

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