Sick Co-worker? Steps to avoid getting the flu at work

University Health System doctors offer tups

Author: Isis Romero , Anchor, iromero@ksat.com
Published On: Jan 30 2013 02:59:44 PM CST   Updated On: Jan 14 2013 10:00:43 PM CST
SAN ANTONIO -

Chances are you know of someone who is or has gotten sick this flu season.

According to the Bureau of Labor Statistics, nearly a third of the nation's employees cannot take sick days. Which means when they can't stay home, many go to work instead.

“If you do have to go to work, it would be important in my opinion to wear a mask,” said Dr. Kevin King, with University Health System. “It's going to be very difficult to not cough on people or around people all the time, so I would recommend wearing a mask.”

If your sick co-worker opts not to wear one, Dr. King, along with Dr. Andrew Muck with University Health System, say there are a number of precautions employees can take to increase their chances of not getting the flu.

In order to stay healthy, one of the most important guidelines is constantly washing and sanitizing your hands and workspace, as well as keep your hands away from your eyes, nose, and mouth.

“Stop touching your hands or face,” said Dr. Muck. “The flu virus is out there in places, and you can't see it. So you touch that, you touch your mouth and your face, you can get it too.”

Another big one? Keep your distance.

“The CDC sites that up to six feet away, a person can still give you the flu,” said Dr. Muck.  “So if you know of someone who is sick, and just do your best to help them feel better, but not get too close to them.”

And although it's not 100 percent guaranteed, doctors say getting a flu shot is still your best defense.

Flu season is expected to last through March.

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