After two employees in the Bengaluru office of SAP, tested positive for the H1N1 virus, an internal communication was rolled out to all the employees across three locations, Bengaluru, Gurugram and Mumbai, to work from home for almost a week.
In an internal communication to employees, the company said: "considering the situation, we encourage you to work from home beginning 20 February till 28 February.”
While employees work from home, SAP is taking initiative to sanitise and fumigate the premises as a remedial measure to limit the spread of the infection.
SAP further shared that it is monitoring the situation closely. Additionally, the leaders have also advised everyone at the firm to seek medical advice, if they or their family members have any symptoms of cold, cough with fever.
The company stated, "The health of our employees is our priority and it is critical that we provide the current information and guidance to help limit the spread of the H1N1 virus."
The H1N1 swine flu is a highly contagious zoonotic infection and symptoms include fever, chills and sore throat, according to the World Health Organisation. While the first case of deadly infection was detected in April 2009 in the United States, many have died in India in outbreaks of the infection in 2014 and 2015. The virus has again become a concern in the country. However, Karnataka health department indicated the response was an overreaction. “We think the coronavirus fear is behind the H1N1 scare. It’s good to take precautions but there’s no need to panic,” a top official from Karnataka told ET.
The fear of H1N1 virus adds on to the on going fear of Coronavirus. While reactive measures like asking employees to work from home and sanitizing the office premises are necessary, it is also important for organizations today to take some proactive measures to ensure their employees’ health safety. The entire office should go through an intense cleaning process during the weekends, and the cleaning schedule can be increased around the work stations, boardrooms, washrooms, and all the prominent places. Employers can also place hand sanitizers around common areas and give the N-95 masks, which are used by healthcare workers and are one of the most effective covers.
For more ideas on how you can take care of your employees during such virus outbreak, read this story: How employers can fight Coronavirus at the workplace
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