Norton Healthcare has become the latest health care system to require its employees to get flu vaccines.

The Louisville, Ky.-based system said the requirement for its more than 12,000 employees proves the company's "commitment to a healthy community and remarkable patient care." Unless they have a diagnosed medical condition that prohibits it, employees must receive the influenza vaccine by Dec. 10. The policy includes both employees and independent physicians.

Norton said it's among the first 16 percent of health care systems in the nation to adopt this mandatory policy. Last week, the state of Rhode Island announced it began to require flu vaccines for health care workers. A little more than two-thirds of all health care personnel received the flu vaccine in the 2011-12 season, marking a 3.4 percentage-point increase from the season before, according to CDC statistics.

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