As the holidays approach and we think about gift giving, there is one that we really don’t like to give or receive and that is a nasty case of the flu. Last year was an especially bad flu season and this year the steps we take can help to keep the nasty flu virus in check.
Here are four points from the Centers for Disease Control on how you can help reduce the spread of influenza in the workplace:
- Promote influenza vaccination among workers.
- Encourage proper hand and respiratory hygiene practices.
- Educate workers on influenza signs and symptoms.
- Inform workers on what to do if they get sick.
The CDC states that vaccination is the single best way to prevent the flu and their website has a business toolkit, including free web tools, to help with employee information and education. Businesses can consider:
- Hosting a flu vaccination clinic.
- Informing employees on where they can get vaccinated.
- Educating on health insurance benefits covering the flu vaccine.
If employees do get sick, staying home and avoiding contact can help prevent the spread of the flu. The CDC advises staying home at least 24 hours after a fever is gone, and a fever should be gone for 24 hours without the use of a fever-reducing medicine.
Often we have workers who come to work sick even if they have paid time benefits. To stop the spread of flu to others, employers should spread the message that they encourage workers to stay home until they are well. Consider work from home options for employees as appropriate or allowing employees to make up time later to support this. To help with prevention, employers can put up reminder signs for hand-washing and other healthy habits and generally encourage good health through support of wellness activities and programs.
The flu can have a great impact on your workplace and taking steps now can reduce the spread and help keep your employees healthy this season. See the link below to the CDC for more information and their business toolkit.
Need help on employee workplace issues? Contact KMA today!