Take the flu more seriously!
An alarming 90 per cent of Australians have risked the health of their colleagues by going to work with flu symptoms – a phenomenon called presenteeism. And they have done it because they don’t want to let the colleagues down or miss work deadlines.
The fact that so many Australians are soldiering on is even more of a reason for people to get vaccinated. People need to take the flu much more seriously as it is a potentially fatal disease that is estimated to cause more deaths than accidents on roads.
While most people tend to use the term ‘flu’ as a catch-all for any type of respiratory infection, influenza is a serious condition with potential complications that can have you off work and in misery for weeks. It’s an equal-opportunity infection that strikes all ages, even the fittest and healthiest. So it is worrying that 20 per cent of people go to work sick, because they don’t think flu symptoms are a serious enough reason to stay home.
Presenteeism is a major concern, especially for people who are at-risk. The influenza virus is more likely to have severe consequences for pregnant women, people aged over 65, people with underlying medical conditions and Indigenous Australians. With flu shots available at your GP now is the time to protect yourselves and others.
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