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Reader's view: Essentia responsibly required flu shots

Congratulations to Dr. Rajesh Prabhu and Essentia Health. They stood up for science. They made good on their commitment to fire employees who refused to take reasonable steps to protect patient health ("Essentia: No more than fifty terminated for failing to comply with flu shot mandate," Nov. 21).

Since science shows that hospital patients are particularly vulnerable to harm from the flu, and since science also shows that immunization is at least somewhat effective in preventing that flu, Essentia required everyone who works near patients to be inoculated against that disease. Although constitutionally protected religious exemptions had to be honored, Essentia, nonetheless, did everything it could do to respect the scientific evidence and protect the safety of its patients.

While we all want people to have as much personal freedom as possible, that freedom cannot be allowed to infringe on the freedoms of others. We cannot let those who work with vulnerable hospital patients to simply choose not to take appropriate steps to protect those patients.

Jim Lyttle