Another outbreak of Swine flu has hit the UK, and is expected to hit employees and employers severely. With significant rise in the number of flu cases, including the H1N1 "swine flu" virus, the focus for everyone – especially employers and HR – must be on managing the outbreak.
Recent figures from FirstCare, which monitors absence rates for the public and private sector, found that 275,000 workers were off sick with flu symptoms following the New Year bank holiday.
But there is much that employers can do to prepare for swine flu outbreaks. We have republished Personnel Today’s selection of the most reliable employer and HR-relevant information. Bookmark this page or sign up to our RSS feeds to ensure you stay up-to-date with the swine flu pandemic.
Swine flu - top tips on planning for and coping with a flu pandemic
1. Put contingency plans in place now
The main difficulty facing businesses is that there are likely to be high levels of staff absence for a variety of reasons, including illness, caring for others, or travel bans/restrictions.
2. Review and update your policies
Employers should review and update employment policies and procedures which may be affected and monitor any changes to official advice.
3. Put in place measures to protect the health and safety of your employees
Employers are under a duty to take steps which are reasonably necessary to ensure the safety of their employees, and not subject them to unnecessary risks of injury.
Read the full list of five top tips for employers
|Swine flu videos from Personnel Today and HR Network TV|
Swine flu: External resources for employers
NHS guidance for employers
Official NHS leaflet on swine flu – recommended to be emailed to employees
Health and Safety Executive - general advice for employers
NHS Direct swine flu symptoms guide
Advice for pregnant workers on swine flu
Swine flu – international travel advice
Business Link – guide to business continuity management
Business Link – how to handle workplace infections and diseases
The latest information on the swine flu pandemic on Personnel Today's sister site XpertHR. Information includes model policies on contigency planning and infectious diseases, occupational health advice and practical steps employers can take.
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