Protect yourself: Flu season is coming

A new guidance document, released by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) encourages employers to prepare now for the impact that seasonal and 2009 H1N1 influenza could have on their employees and operations this fall.

According to the CDC, employers should work with employees to develop and implement plans that can reduce the spread of flu, and to encourage seasonal flu vaccination as well as H1N1 vaccination when that vaccine becomes available. 

The report says that employers’ plans should address the following points:

  • Encouraging employees with flu-like symptoms or illness to stay home,
  • Operating with reduced staffing, and
  • Having employees who are at higher risk of serious medical complications from infection work from home.

Employer should also review sick leave policies and try to make the policies flexible for workers who may have to stay home with ill family members or if a child’s school is closed, the CDC says.

In addition, employers should consider canceling non-essential face-to-face meetings and travel, and spacing employees farther apart.

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