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SEASONAL INFLUENZA (FLU) IN THE WORKPLACE

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NIOSH Activities: Health Hazard Evaluations

The National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health (NIOSH) Health Hazard Evaluation (HHE) Program responds to requests from employers, employees, and union representatives to evaluate potential workplace health hazards. The HHE Program is available to evaluate occupational issues related to influenza [PDF - 137 KB] and help identify ways of reducing risks to workers during the 2010-2011 influenza season. NIOSH has previously conducted such evaluations during the 2009-10 influenza pandemic. To ensure that our limited resources are used where the needs are greatest, we are focusing our influenza efforts on industries and occupational settings in which workers have frequent contact with sick individuals or the general public. These include, but are not limited to the following:

  • Healthcare workers (clinical, laboratory, non-clinical) in a variety of settings
  • Teachers and other school staff
  • Child care providers
  • Transportation workers
  • Hospitality and food service workers
  • High-volume retail store personnel
  • Public administration workers

The following are examples of issues for which an HHE with a workplace visit could be helpful:

  • Assess employees’ knowledge, attitudes, and practices regarding influenza infection control measures such as vaccination and personal protective equipment (PPE) use
  • Evaluate workplace influenza-related policies and programs
  • Determine the burden of influenza and influenza-like illness
  • Investigate an influenza outbreak or cluster of influenza cases
  • Measure environmental exposures through air and surface sampling

Once each evaluation is complete, we will share our findings and recommendations in a written response. Recommendations may include correcting deficient infection control measures, strengthening policies, and providing effective worker training.

To make an HHE request, or to obtain more information on the HHE Program, go to www.cdc.gov/niosh/hhe. Within 1 week of submitting an HHE request, we will contact you to discuss the request.

Point of Contact: HHERequestHelp@cdc.gov

 
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  • Page last reviewed: June 4, 2012
  • Page last updated: February 25, 2011
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