Ohio: We Need to Pass HB 170

by Dr. Sherri Tenpenny, DO, AOBNMM, AIHM

On April 28, 2015, Ohio Representative Christian Hagan from District 50 (Stark County/Akron area), introduced HB 170. If enacted, this new legislation would prohibit an employer from taking an adverse employment action against a person who has not been, or will not be, vaccinated against influenza. You can read the short, one-page bill here

I was in Columbus on May 19 to testify in favor of this bill. Three people who testified before me were asked technical medical questions by the legislators. Tony DiBiase, who has been working tirelessly for nearly three years with Rep. Hagan to get this bill introduced, spoke up and requested that Chairman Young invite me to speak next.

After reading my 8 minute testimony (see below), I answered all the previously asked questions. The legislators were so interested in my answers, they proceeded to ask more questions for nearly 40 minutes, not only about influenza, but also about Hepatitis B, thimerosal, and even autism! Nine more testimonies came next, all of which were very compelling – people who had been seriously injured by a flu shot, employees that had been threatened and had to hire an attorney for their own defense, people who had been fired for refusing the shot. The hearing ran over by nearly an hour and most of the committee members stayed until all testimonies were complete. 

We made great progress. Please stay in close contact through Facebook and/or join my email contact list . If you’ve never taken the time to contact with your state legislators, DO IT NOW. Unlike our unresponsive Washington D.C. “representatives,” State legislators are much more interested in connecting with their constituents. Even if you only call – which takes 2-3 minutes – you DO make a difference. If you can, make an appointment to meet with them on this issue. 

  • Here’s a link to find the legislator for your district.
  • Here’s a link to find out what Ohio District you live in. 
  • Here’s a link to contact the members of the Commerce and Labor Committee who held the hearing. Each member really needs to hear from you before next Wednesday, when the opponents of HB107 will have their hearing day. 



May 19, 2015

I want to thank Chairman Young and the committee for allowing me to testify on House Bill 170.

My name is Dr Sherri Tenpenny. I am a native Ohioan. I currently reside in Cuyahoga County, where I live and work as an osteopathic medical doctor in my practice with 14 employees. I am board certified in three medical specialties. I was full time Emergency Medicine physician and the Director of the Emergency at Blanchard Valley Regional Health Center in Findlay, Ohio from 1986 to 1998. Since 2000, I have invested more than 20,000 hours of personal time investigating the adverse impact vaccines can have on health. I have written two books on this topic, contributed to several others and I have produced 8 educational DVDs. My online and print articles have been translated into at least 10 languages and my radio presence has an international reach.

I am here today to support HB170, and to support a HCWs right to refuse the flu shot. It is my personal and professional opinion that the flu shot should be completely voluntary. Vaccinating should never be required in exchange for job. I will list five reasons you must support HB170, with supporting evidence.

Reason #1: Giving ME (or a HCW) a flu shot does not prevent YOU (or patients) from getting the flu.

  • More than 200 viruses can cause influenza-like illness. The symptoms are identical to symptoms caused by influenza viruses and can only be distinguished by laboratory confirmation.
  • What is little known is that influenza viruses are not the primary cause of influenza-illness.
  • Using the CDC’s own data[1], I personally tabulated CDC annual reports over an 11-year period, from 1998-2008. Influenza viruses caused flu-like illness only 13.9% of the time.
  • This means, at best, an effective flu shot would have prevented 14% of the cases of flu.
  • The Cochrane Collaboration is a global network of independent researchers and professionals. Their reports are valuable because they are free from commercial sponsorship and other conflicts of interest.
    • The 2010 Cochrane Review[2] on Influenza concluded, “There is no evidence that flu shots affect complications, such as pneumonia, and no evidence flu shots effect transmission.” This means a flu shot does not stop the spread of the flu.
    • The 2013 Cochrane Review[3] on Influenza concluded: “There is no evidence that (only) vaccinating healthcare workers prevents laboratory-confirmed influenza or its complications in individuals aged 60 or over in nursing homes. There is no evidence to mandate compulsory vaccination of healthcare workers.

Reason #2: Flu shots do not prevent lost days from work.

  1. The 2004 Cochrane Review[4] examined 25 reports with nearly 60,000 adults and concluded: “Vaccination of healthy adults only reduced risk of influenza by 6% and only reduced the number of missed work days by less than one day, actually 0.13 days. The report concluded: “Universal immunization of healthy adults was not supported by this review.”
  2. Ten years later, the 2014 Cochrane Review on Influenza[5] concluded: “Influenza vaccines have a very modest effect in reducing influenza symptoms and working days lost in the general population, including pregnant women.”

Reason #3: Flu shots contain problematic ingredients, with potentially serious side effects. I will mention only four. 

  • Triton X-100 is a detergent that can damage cell membranes, disrupt mitochondria and cause a rapid decline in cell function, all of which are conditions that can lead to cancer.
  • Polysorbate 80 is a chemical that can cause infertility and anaphylactic shock.
  • Formaldehyde is a chemical that the National Toxicology Program officially listed as a known human carcinogen in 2011.
  • Thimerosal: yes the multi-dose flu shots still contain 25mcg of mercury per dose.
  • It is important to note that INJECTING a substance into a muscle for absorption into the body is very different from INGESTING or INHALING that same substance.

Reason #4: Flu shots are not safe, reactions are not rare and treating complications are costly.

  • All FDA-licensed vaccines pose inherent risks of harm. In 2011, the US Supreme Court acknowledged that vaccines are “unavoidably unsafe”
  • As of November 2013, the federal Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting system, commonly referred to as VAERS, has received more than 93,000 reports of reactions, injuries, hospitalizations, including 1,080 deaths, following influenza vaccinations. The VAERS search engine found 10,932 cases with serious side effects for Fluzone, the most commonly used flu vaccine.
  • Between Jan 2006 and Dec 30, 2013, The National Vaccine Injury Compensation Program has paid out $944 Million[6] in adjudicated claims for flu shot injuries. Forcing vaccinations as a requirement for employment will increase this number.
  • Guillain-Barré Syndrome, a potentially life threatening cause of paralysis, is a potential side effect of the flu shot. Between 1980 and 2005, 632 cases of GBS followed a flu shot.[7]
  • Medicare estimates the cost to treat ONE case of GBS to be $85,909 if the patient does not require a ventilator. If a patient requires time in the ICU and has been on a ventilator, that cost escalates to a whooping $517,402.[8]
  • The costs of treating other potential side effects from the flu shot – extensive medical workups, long-term medications for seizures and other neurological disorders – are not included when the “cost savings” of a broad based vaccination program is promoted to you for funding. We really don’t know what the TRUE COST of the influenza program really is in the state of Ohio.

Reason #5: Forcing an employee to be injected with a vaccination in exchange for employment has little support in science. 

  • Public health and Healthy People 2020 guidelines have widely promoted the notion that patients are put at risk unless HCWs are vaccinated.
  • Studies to support this premise are sorely lacking, as documented in the paper I presented. Please turn to page 5 and note the KEY POINTS.

In Summary, the reasons to support HB170 are:

#1 – Giving HCW a flu shot does not prevent a patient from getting the flu.

#2 – Flu shots do not prevent lost time from work.

#3 – Flu shots contain problematic ingredients that can cause serious harm.

#4 – Flu shots are not safe, reactions are not rare and side effects are costly.

#5 – Most importantly, the evidence for vaccinating healthcare workers, if any, is heavily flawed and inconclusive at best.

I have no doubt shared a lot of information you did not know about the flu shot. Knowing what you know now, how likely are you to run out and get a flu shot?

  • Do you want those ingredients injected into your body…in exchange for your job?
  • Are you willing to risk long-term disability… in exchange for your job?
  • Would you want your spouse, your sibling or your child to lose their job for refusing this vaccination?

Flu shots are not necessary to avoid the flu, even though they are promoted to be as good for you – and as benign – as a B12 shot. Punishing an informed person who refuses the flu shot by firing them or otherwise discriminating against them, is a misuse of governmental power and overreach of public health. Where will be stop with medicating in exchange for employment?

Please support HB170 and protect Ohio workers from possible harm from this vaccination if they choose to refuse. Their freedom of choice needs to be legislatively protected. Thank you.

Dr Sherri Tenpenny, DO, AOBNMM, ABIHM, (AOBEM 1995 through 2006)

[1] CDC: http://www.cdc.gov/flu/weekly/fluactivity.htm Weekly Flu Activity & Surveillance Reports. Oct.(wk 40) to May (wk 20) each year.

[2] 2010: Vaccines for preventing influenza in healthy adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2010 Jul 7;(7).

[3] 2013: Influenza vaccination for healthcare workers who care for people aged 60 or older living in long-term care institutions. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2013 Jul 22;(7).

[4] 2004: Vaccines for preventing influenza in healthy adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2004;(3)

[5] 2014: Vaccines for preventing influenza in healthy adults. Cochrane Database Syst Rev. 2014 Mar 13;3.

[6] 2014: http://www.ers.usda.gov/media/925395/aer756.pdf    NVICP Adjudication Categories

[7] 2009: Guillain-Barré syndrome after vaccination in United States: data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention/FDA Vaccine Adverse Event Reporting System (1990-2005). J Clin Neuromuscul Dis. 2009 Sep;11(1):1-6.

[8] 1995: Estimated Annual Cost of Campylobacter-Associated GBS and Guillian-Barre Syndrome. Agricultural Economic Report No. 756. pg. 12. Dollars updated from 1995 spending to 2105 equivalent.

Photo by paulswansen



  1. Can we get a bill like this in California, which would include all vaccines required for employment? It is needed to counter the bill proposed for Daycare workers and Pre-School Teachers. Our bill mandates all adult vaccines required on the schedule. I’m sure many good teachers and daycare workers will quit their jobs because of this bill. They will have a choice, their health or their job. If the vaccines make them sick and disabled, they will lose their job anyway.

  2. I have had a kidney transplant and take these immunosuppressants daily so my kidney won’t reject. First off I don’t know if this doctor is lieing to me or not. Consequentlymy immune system is compromised and I get all kinds of sicknesses that come along. May be I should be come the “bubble boy” that was on an episode of “Seinfeld.” But every year this pain-in-the-ass doctor asks me if I got my flu shot for the season and every season I say NO! I don’t any form of vaccine and since I’ve stopped takking that worthless flu shot I have never got the flu. The CDC are a bunch of assholes. I swear they put 20 monkeys in a room with all the darts they want and which ever strain gets the most dart strikes, then that’s what these morons come up with this years flu shot!! I have a daughter having her first child in January and doesn’t want to hear my thoughts on vaccines. She’ll probably follow the mainstream quackery. What can I do?

    To all those inglorious bastards called doctors,
    Please give me real advice–Robert Kimble

    • RobertKimble: I am a nurse an am against vaccines. I’ve been waking up to the fact that the drug companies run the medical schools in the US! No wonder all the do is push chemicals! I’ve read research and the ingredients of vaccines. With my 3rd child I was working at the health dept. I saw first hand how the state brainwashes the nurses who in turn give children (and adults – esp. Pregnant women) allllllll the vaccines in the fridge! If it’s made they give it! No longer do they say ‘these are ‘required’ & these are optional’! I started this research when my youngest was born (because of the sheer numbers hey give now!). I discovered she was given shots I’d refused! Nothing I could do at that point! It was already in her sxm. All they have to do is write down the ones you agreed to and then go back an fill in the ‘combo’ – that you thought was a single! It’s not drawn up in the room either! Even knowing all this & being a nurse – my family dismisses me! You could try to print out vaccine ingredients from the CDC and print out what those ingredients are. Maybe understanding injecting aluminum and Mercury directly into your body isn’t a good thing…good luck, my family didn’t see the problem! And my mom couldn’t understand why she got the flu every year even though she got her flu shot! (Though I explained it every year!) Go figure.

  3. I did purchase “What’s coming through that needle” great video! I quit my nursing job in California and moved to a conservative state because of Jerry Browns’ mandates on vaccinating healthcare workers. The Ghistapo vaccine POLICE were ramping up their efforts to eliminate choice. I pray Donald Trump wins, Sanctuary States will lose federal funds and all their efforts to commit Genocide will go with them.

    • Isn’t it aweful how those of us who use our scientific brain in the medical field are demonized because we can see the ‘status quo’ is way off?! It’s aweful you had to leave the state just to find employment! I live in a conservative state, and if you work for a state facility, (health dept, hospital, etc.) you run into the same issue. I was forced to get the DTaP at one hospital. Within a week I was ill. Within a month I began having muscle pain everywhere. All (as in every one) Drs. say – shot didn’t cause it, though they don’t ‘know’ what did. Must be getting old. Etc… This approach to medicine and health needs to be revisited. The bullies in the sandbox want to make sure to continue to give everyone the shake down – get all they can from you! After all sickness IS their profit margin!

  4. Im an RN from Gastonia, NC. Im in a position to receive the FLu shot or loose my job. The name of the Flu Vaccine is FLUblock. Can you tell me whats in it? Any information would be helpful. I have to make my decision bu November 15. Thanks for your help.

    • From the CDC’s Vaccine Excipient & Media Summary, the FLUblock ingredients: monobasic sodium phosphate, dibasic sodium phosphate, polysorbate 20, baculovirus and host cell proteins, baculovirus and cellular DNA, Triton X-100, lipids, vitamins, amino acids, mineral salts.

      Polysorbate 20 and Triton X-100 both disrupt the blood-brain barrier, giving the other chemicals access to the brain. You might want to look up the toxic hazard warnings associated with the other ingredients.

      Should you decide to get the shot, large doses of vitamins C and D3 plus whatever other supplementation has worked for you in the past, for a week prior, if you can manage it, and a few weeks following, would be beneficial. Also, avoid processed sugar.

  5. Robert Kimble,
    I think flu shots are pointless, but I have a question for you. If you give 1000 kids a vaccine, and 20 of them have an adverse reaction to it, don’t you think that those odds are way better than 1000 people being exposed to the disease who are unvaccinated?

    • Not really. Influenza is a benign illness, which means that the vast majority of people will experience no complications, and complete recovery is expected. The flu shot, on the other hand, is the most often compensated of all the vaccines, typically triggering Guillain-Barré syndrome, sometimes transverse myelitis, sometimes death. Fundamentally, injection of known neurotoxins and other chemicals none of which belong in the bloodstream is an irrational – destructive – approach to better health.

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