The world waits as SARS epidemic grows

Almost
half of the world’s multinational companies have put a limit on travel to
countries affected by SARS, research has found.

A
poll of just under 400 multinational organisations, by US HR management
consultancy Organization Resources Counselors, shows most companies now require
high-level approval for business trips.

A
fifth of firms are paying for expats in the most seriously affected regions to
return home.

Employers
are taking various actions to stop the spread of SARS. Some are letting
returning staff take time away from the office as unpaid leave while others
expect staff to work from home for a short period.

Four
out of 10 firms are conducting active surveillance of employees with SARS-like
symptoms.

Geoffrey
Latta, executive vice-president at Organization Resource Counselors, said: “If
the number of cases continues to grow, companies may put stronger restrictions
in place. But, for the most part, employers are doing the right thing by
communicating with staff on the issue.”

www.orcinc.com

By Ross Wigham

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