Every year, up to 20 percent of Americans become ill with regular seasonal flu. This year, in addition to seasonal flu, health experts expect there will be a second wave of the H1N1 flu. Because few people have immunity to this new virus, it is likely that more people will become ill.
Businesses and schools should take the following actions to prepare for the upcoming flu season:
–If you have children, have a plan for emergencies and in case someone gets sick. If your child is sick, keep your child home.
–Prevent the spread of the disease. Stay home if you’re sick, cover your coughs and sneezes, wash your hands frequently with soap for 20 seconds, and avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. If soap and water are not available, use hand sanitizer.
–Get vaccinated for seasonal flu and for H1N1 flu. H1N1 vaccine will likely become widely available later this fall, and will be given first to the most high-risk individuals.
–Download King County Public Health’s 8-page information packet “Get Ready for Flu” (PDF) to keep in your business or home.
For more information on the H1N1 flu, Public Health of Seattle and King County has a hotline: (877) 903-5464. You can also get the latest information online at King County’s flu information page.
Together we can protect ourselves, our families, and our workplace.