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Flu at Work: An Employer Game Plan

Every year, the influenza virus costs businesses roughly $10 billion in direct costs for hospitalizations and outpatient visits. Here are some flu prevention tips for your workplace:

  • Encourage employees to get vaccinated for the flu every year; it’s the single best protection against flu.* 
  • Communicate a flexible sick leave policy so workers aren’t afraid of being terminated and won’t be tempted to come in with the flu and infect others
  • Advise sick employees to stay home until they are fever-free for 24 hours without medication; a person can infect others up to seven days after getting sick, so take extra precautions to minimize exposure between sick and healthy employees.
  • Inform employees that coughing and sneezing are primary means of spreading the flu; provide tissues and encourage their use.
  • Provide water, soap and hand sanitizers and encourage employees to keep their hands clean and to avoid touching their eyes, noses and mouths.
  • Provide cleaning supplies and encourage employees to routinely clean doorknobs, counters, computers and other surfaces that are touched frequently.

*According to the Centers for Disease Control

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