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Up to 3 Flu Vaccines May Be Needed This Year

by Admin on August 20, 2009

CDC Issues New Guidelines for Employers

CDC Issues New Guidelines for Employers

Several papers carried the revised guidelines from the CDC yesterday directed towards the private sector. Heres one from the LA Times:

Officials May Recommend 3 Flu Shots PDF Print E-mail
by LA Times
Thursday, 20 August 2009
In a sign of heightened concern that the upcoming flu season could be severe, top national and local health officials warned Wednesday that employers should brace for worker absences and cautioned the public that as many as three shots this season may be needed to protect against the H1N1 strain and seasonal flu.

In Washington, Commerce Secretary Gary Locke urged that common sense take precedence over “the Puritan work ethic.”

He joined two other Cabinet secretaries to tell business owners to prepare for losing key employees to swine flu for days at a time. Federal officials told employers to encourage hand washing and aggressively clean work areas and to send ill workers home at the first hint of flu symptoms, expecting that they will be out for three to five days.

Locke also suggested that employers consider curtailing face-to-face meetings and limiting company travel to prevent swine flu’s spread. Business owners, officials said, should be open to telecommuting and other options that could allow employees to work from home.

“Be responsible and understanding for the absenteeism that needs to occur with this strain of the flu,” said Homeland Security Secretary Janet Napolitano.

In Los Angeles County, health officials asked the public to get not only the regular seasonal flu shot, but also as many as two additional inoculations to protect against the H1N1 strain.

Dr. Jonathan Fielding, the county’s health officer, said at a news conference Wednesday that three shots may be needed because initial studies suggest a single swine-flu inoculation may not be sufficient. Fielding asked doctors and other medical providers to sign up for the H1N1 flu vaccine by registering online at the county Department of Public Health’s website.

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