When’s the last time your employees visited a doctor to get a shot?
Chances are most of your work force doesn’t know and hasn’t kept up-to-date with their immunization records.
As an employer, you might think that an employee’s vaccination status is none of your business – but when diseases like the flu take a toll on your workplace, you’ll see that your employee’s health choices should be your concern.
We’re highlighting some of the reasons why your workplace wellness program should include an immunization component – and how to successfully integrate it!
Immunizations & Workplace Wellness
The Cost of the Flu
When an employee catches the flu, it doesn’t just affect them – the repercussions can be felt in the workplace. According to the Virginia Department of Health, in 2010 alone the flu contributed to 200 million days of lower productivity, 100 million days of bed rest, 75 million absences from work, and 22 million visits to the doctor. And data from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) reveals the medical impact of the disease: on average, 36,000 deaths and 200,000 hospitalizations result from the flu.
In terms of lost productivity and direct medical costs, the flu costs US businesses $87.1 billion dollars. Employers who integrate the flu vaccine into their workplace wellness programs can save $30 for each vaccinated employee.
Steps for Implementing Immunization into Workplace Wellness
Clearly, employers have a vested interest in adding an immunization component, particularly the flu vaccine, to their workplace wellness programs. Here are some tips to help you do just that.
Verify Vaccination Coverage
The first step to adding an immunization program to your workplace wellness program is ensuring that any employee-provided insurance covers preventative health services such as vaccination. The CDC recommends the following vaccinations to adults, so you’ll want to make sure they’re covered:
- The flu vaccine – must be renewed each year to protect from the current dominate strains
- Tetanus, diphtheria, and pertussis (Tdap) – for adults who have not previously received the vaccine
- Hepatitis B
- Travel immunizations – important for employees traveling abroad for business
If your company health plan does not cover these immunizations, consider paying for on-site vaccination services.
You can’t require your employees to get immunized, but you can educate them on the importance of the flu vaccine. Try hosting lunch and learns and posting information in weekly workplace bulletins. Include statistics on how the flu impacts health and the workplace, and information on how your employees can get their flu vaccine.
Provide On-Site Immunization
The best way to protect your workplace from the flu is by providing convenient access to the flu vaccine. On-site immunization services allow your employees to get the flu vaccine at the office rather than rearranging their schedules to visit the doctor. Hosting clinical health providers during work hours should increase the number of employees who opt for the flu vaccine.
Test Smartly Labs, Your Flu Vaccine Partner
Let your local wellness-certified Test Smartly Labs be your workplace wellness partner this flu season. We provide on-site wellness assistance, including administration of the flu vaccine.
To get started, find your nearest Test Smartly Labs today!