Flu Outbreak Costing Businesses in More Ways Than One

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(Memphis) - The music has been mixed with a message lately on FM 100 Radio.

"Hopefully Ron Olson will be back Monday. He's been sick almost two weeks now.  So whatever you do, please get a flu shot. I got mine last Saturday," DJ Chris Michaels told his listening audience Friday.

The station's popular morning personality Ron Olsen has been off the mic, home sick with the flu.
Other employees have fallen sick too.
Those still on the job are taking precautions.

"This studio is real small. We are in a  confined area on a daily basis. So after every shift the personality comes in uses the Clorox Wipes to wipe down the counter. We spray everything with Lysol," says Michaels.

New numbers say businesses will spend nearly 10 and a half billion dollars in hospital and doctor visit costs this flu season.
That's not including costs of sick pay and lost productivity from the flu.

"Even the employees that try to go to work and tough it out are not as effective," says Dr. Mark Castellaw of the The Medical Group and Baptist Hospital. He says this flu season is the worse he's seen in  30 years and he is constantly sending patients home rather than back to work.

"With today's society and the economy the way it is, people don't want to miss  work, don't want to miss a paycheck, don't want to, if they have sick time, use it. They are toughening it out and going to work," says Dr. Castellaw.

But he says staying home  is less costly and protects everyone.
If you haven't been hit, take precautions to keep it that way.  Get the flu shot and wash your hands.

"Personal hygiene is very important with your hands and face and the environment around you including your home," says Dr. Castellaw.

Something you can do at  work to protect yourself,  have disinfecting wipes on hand at work and use them, especially on surfaces like the phone and your keyboard, the places where you are most likely to pick up germs.

A little precaution can go a long way.