Protecting your Organization as Flu Season Approaches Share Along with all of the fun fall activities like football games, visiting pumpkin patches and apple orchards, group hayrides and various festivals, fall also ushers in cold and flu season. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), peak flu season falls between December and February each year in the U.S. (https://www.cdc.gov/flu/index.htm). The flu not only causes illness and spreads quickly, but also results in financial costs to businesses and employees alike, as it results in time off work, medical visits, and in severe cases hospitalization and even death. Protect your organization, your employees, members, etc. as much as possible by taking preventative steps, as listed below. We are all more productive in our work when we are healthy and well! Preventative Measures Host a flu vaccination clinic – Hosting a flu vaccination event at your facility can help reduce the number of flu cases, as well as the number of absent employees and volunteers, maintaining productivity and efficiency. Many pharmacies and community vaccinators can be contracted to arrange such an event at your facility. If a flu vaccination clinic is not possible, take steps to encourage your members, employees and staff to get a flu vaccine and provide information on how to do so. Regularly clean and disinfect – It is important to regularly clean and disinfect commonly touched objects, such as door knobs, keyboards and phones during cold and flu season. Educate about daily preventative measures – Share information about flu symptoms, how the virus spreads and how to stay healthy with those that work and visit your organization. Maintain adequate supplies of tissues, soap, paper towels, alcohol-based hand sanitizer and disposable wipes – Since your organization will be encouraging individuals to participate in daily preventative measures, make sure you have enough items to support these activities. Encourage those who are sick to stay home – Most importantly, the best way to prevent the spread of flu among your organization is to encourage those who have already fallen ill to stay home and away from your facility until they are well. While the flu is most common in the fall and winter, be sure to your organization establishes a plan in responding to illness outbreaks at any point during the year. Sources: Centers for Disease Control and Prevention OSHA: Guidance on Preparing Workplaces for an Influenza Pandemic Category Religious Organizations Nonprofit Small Business Education © 2024 GuideOne Insurance. GuideOne® is the registered trademark of the GuideOne Insurance Company. All rights reserved. This material is for informational purposes only. It is not intended to give specific legal or risk management advice, nor are any suggested checklists or action plans intended to include or address all possible risk management exposures or solutions. You are encouraged to retain your own expert consultants and legal advisors in order to develop a risk management plan specific to your own activities.