Nurse sues Pennsylvania hospital, says it fired her for refusing flu shot

A nurse filed a lawsuit against Penn Medicine Lancaster (Pa.) General Health Dec. 5, alleging religious discrimination after she was fired for not getting a flu shot, CBS 21 reports. 

Since 2012, Philadelphia-based Penn Medicine has required all healthcare professionals to get a flu shot every year, unless an exemption is requested and approved.

Shyanne Aukamp-Corcoran began working for the company in 2001, the lawsuit states, and received the flu shot from 2012 to November 2016. Around this time, she began attending church services and believing her religion required her to keep her body pure from any contaminants, the lawsuit claims.

After having a miscarriage in May 2017, Ms. Aukamp-Corcoran discovered the flu shot could increase the risk for miscarriage, the lawsuit states.

Due to her medical concerns and religious beliefs, the nurse chose not to receive any vaccinations, the suit claims. Her request for exemption, however, was denied Dec. 22, 2017.

Ms. Aukamp-Corcoran still did not get the flu shot. She was fired Jan. 5, 2018, for failing to receive the vaccination, the suit claims.

"As a general practice, we do not comment on ongoing litigation or personnel matters," Penn Medicine said in a statement to CBS 21. "Many hospitals across the country have mandatory flu vaccination programs to provide for the health and safety of their patients, visitors and employees."  

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More articles on clinical leadership & infection control:
Thousands of VA medical tests improperly canceled or delayed, audit finds
HHS invests $226M in pandemic flu shot
'Do you even understand what I'm saying to you?': Michigan hospital turns away patient who speaks limited English

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