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Dodge Flu Without Leaving Work

Armen Hareyan's picture

The flu is not only a miserable illness, it is also a costly and potentially dangerous one. As employees stay home shivering in bed, their valuable work productivity is lost. Plus, the flu can be a very serious illness, with complications that can include bacterial pneumonia, ear infections, sinus infections, and worse. (1) One of the best ways to avoid the flu is to get vaccinated against it. On-site flu shot clinics are a convenient and time-saving way to encourage vaccination, and CIGNA HealthCare is making it easy for employers to offer them.

CIGNA HealthCare now offers on-site flu clinics to its employer clients in alliance with Summit Health(TM) (formerly known as Retail Health Network). Summit is one of the nation's leading providers of on-site health screening and immunization programs. Clinics, complete with flu vaccines, will be held at customer worksites and can be scheduled day or night, weekdays or weekends, to accommodate employer needs.

"The flu is contagious and when employees bring flu to the workplace, it is very likely to spread. A CIGNA On-Site Flu Clinic is an easy way to safeguard a business's most important asset - its people - against the flu," said Dr. Allen Wolfe, CIGNA's national medical director for health advocacy. "In addition to avoiding time away from work, the flu vaccine helps protect employees and their families from what can be very serious complications associated with the illness."

While many people think of the flu as a nuisance, the facts show just how serious it can be.

Every year in the United States, on average:

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-- 5 to 20 percent of the population gets the flu(2)

-- more than 200,000 people are hospitalized due to flu complications(3)

-- about 36,000 people die from flu(4)

Flu viruses spread mainly from person to person through coughing or sneezing.(5) The duration of illness can be days to weeks.(6) Anyone who would like to reduce their chance of getting the flu may get a vaccination. Some people, such as older people, young children, and people with certain health conditions, are at higher risk for serious flu complications and are strongly encouraged to get vaccinated.(7)

Recent research indicates that 12,000 lives could be saved each year if the portion of adults ages 50 and older who get the flu immunization each year were increased to 90 percent. Currently, only an estimated 37 percent of people in this age group get the flu shot.(8)

CIGNA HealthCare's on-site flu clinics, along with other on-site health and wellness screenings, are part of the company's comprehensive approach to promoting health and wellness and enabling healthy behavior among employees through knowledge, skills, motivation and opportunity.