Are you managing a team of healthcare professionals this flu season? With high rates of flu expected to surge during and after the holiday time, taking steps to keep your team as healthy and safe as possible will help your healthcare organization run smoothly and efficiently, while protecting the health of your patients! Here are a few of the best strategies to protect your team from the flu in the months ahead:
Promote the benefits of the flu vaccine.
First and foremost, it’s essential to educate your employees about the benefits of receiving the flu vaccine. Some of the main benefits of the flu shot include reduced symptoms and less likelihood of hospitalization in the case of an infection. It’s also important to communicate with employees how the flu vaccine is updated every year to protect against various strains of influenza. According to AMA, this year’s vaccine protects against four major strains, including flu A H1N1. With this added protection, employees who receive the flu shot can significantly reduce their risk of severe illness.
Implement telehealth work policies.
If you don’t currently have any telehealth policies in place, the start of flu season is a great time to consider this option. While remote work is not always feasible for every employer, finding ways to allow healthcare employees to work from home – even in the form of a flexible paid sick leave policy – can prevent the spread of the flu in the workplace and give employees the ability to stay home and care for sick family members. Establishing policies that afford your staff the opportunity to work in a telehealth capacity will ultimately improve productivity while ensuring they don’t spread the flu to other members of your onsite team.
Create a sanitary work environment.
Often the best prevention of flu can start right in the workplace, where germs can easily spread from person to person. There are many ways to create a more sanitary environment for both your staff and patients. You can do this by providing tissues, no-touch trash cans, and numerous alcohol-based sanitizing stations around your facility. Many healthcare organizations also place signage (such as posters and flyers) in patient rooms, waiting areas, and bathrooms that explain healthy habits and employee policies. By reinforcing proper health and safety protocols, you can create a safer, more sanitary environment for everyone in your organization.
With these practices, you can proactively prevent the spread of the flu in your workplace while creating a healthier, safer environment for your patients.
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