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You Should Be Encouraging Employees to Get Their Flu Shots

This year more than ever.

When employees get their flu shots, it’s good for business. They’re less likely to miss work from illness, or get other employees or guests sick.

And this year, more than ever, it’s important because it’s so hard to tell the flu apart from COVID, so employees sick with the flu might have to stay out for longer periods of time until they can be tested for both flu and COVID to determine which it is, or until they recover. That translates to a lot of missed work and a lot of sick people. 

The flu shot works - you’re much less likely to get the flu if you’ve had the flu shot. It’s also safe - millions of people get the flu shot each year.

Host a Flu Vaccination Clinic 

First and foremost, if you’re able to host a vaccination drive, where employees can come to a specific location and get a flu shot, that’s far and away the best way to ensure employees do get flu shots. 

There are ways to do that safely this year - with scheduled time slots to avoid long lines, social distancing, and PPE. If this option is one you can still arrange, we highly recommend it. 

Encourage People to Get Flu Shots in their Community 

Even if an on-site drive isn’t in the cards for this year, there are other ways that you can encourage your employees to get flu shots. 

  • Offer flu vouchers that employees can take to their local pharmacy to get a free flu shot. This is a super common and incredibly easy option that does drive 
  • Check if your health insurance company covers flu shots through major providers like pharmacies, Costco, or Walmart, and be sure to remind insured employees of local spots they can get their flu shots for free with their insurance.
  • Establish & communicate policies that allow employees to take an hour or two to get a flu shot in the community. It’s crucial to communicate these clearly to employees so they know they can take the time!
  • Use promotional posters in high-traffic areas (manager’s office doors, break rooms, employee bathrooms, etc) to advertise locations in the community that offer flu shots. 
  • Have each manager send a personal text or email to their team encouraging them to get a flu shot, and sending them info on local spots they can get their flu shot.
  • Write about it in any company communications - cover why it’s even more important this year, and provide info about where to get the vaccine in the community.
  • Share the flu vaccine finder with employees to help them find out where they can get a flu vaccine:
  • Encourage flu vaccination for employees’ families by printing up info about local flu vaccination clinics for employees to take home. 

It’s hard to emphasize how important it will be for our healthcare system, for our business, and for our individual employees to ensure that there isn’t a very bad flu season coinciding with COVID this year. Encouraging employees to get their flu shot is an easy, tangible way that you can help prevent what Dr. Art Liang of the Immunization Action Coalition calls the “twindemic.” 

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Disclaimer: This post is meant for general information and educational purposes only and does not constitute, and is not intended as, any form of medical, legal or regulatory advice or a recommendation or suggestion regarding the same.  No recipient of this information should act or refrain from acting on the basis of this information without first seeking legal advice from counsel in the relevant jurisdiction.