The benefits of vaccination to healthy, working adults and their employers are well-established: vaccination cuts the risk of ‘flu by approximately 70-80%, and reduces time off work from colds and flu by forty three per cent. In a typical year, up to one third of British adults may suffer from flu during the winter, and one third of sufferers become ill enough to visit their doctor.
For companies and organizations, the potential benefits are even greater than the benefits to the individual: respiratory viruses can spread easily among groups of people who work together and share facilities on the same site.
Flu is not just a disruption in the sick person’s life; it is an obstacle to how well companies function given employee absence and/or diminished employee productivity. Employers bear the brunt of indirect flu costs.
Flu may circulate less readily between people working at home, but this can be balanced by an increased risk of respiratory infection when children are also in the same household. It is to everyone’s advantage that as many people as possible within the same organization should be protected.
In addition, flu-like symptoms can mimic SARS-CoV-2 infection: preventing flu, where possible, helps reduce the risk and impact of a coronavirus “false alarm” for both employees and employers.