Protect the overall health and well-being of the building community through seasonal influenza prevention and other immunization efforts.
Immunization prevents illness, disability and death from vaccine-preventable diseases, averting an estimated 2-3 million deaths every year. Seasonal flu is a widespread public health concern that causes severe illness and death in high-risk populations, costing the U.S. alone $10.4 billion in healthcare costs each year and $6.2 billion in lost productivity. The average hospitalized flu case in Canada costs $11.092, and the Asian Development Bank estimates that a flu pandemic would cost a 2.6 to 6.5 percent loss to Asia's entire GDP. Flu-like illness is responsible for 45% of workdays lost and 49% of low productivity days among working adults. 53% of adults have missed work to care for flu-ill children. Vaccinations are essential components of a healthy community, as unvaccinated individuals pose a risk to vulnerable individuals such as infants, older adults and those with compromised immune systems.
Vaccination is the most effective way to prevent the flu. Providing on-site, free and actively-promoted flu vaccines is a highly effective method of increasing vaccination rates and reducing seasonal flu cases. Employer-sponsored vaccination programs are relatively inexpensive, cost-saving and effective, as simply reducing out-of-pocket costs alone can improve vaccination rates. Additionally, providing education on good health habits, such as hand hygiene and cough etiquette, can help stop the spread of germs and prevent illnesses like the flu. Beyond the flu, other essential immunizations are recommended based on a variety of factors including age, lifestyle and medical history.
By reducing common barriers to vaccination and providing vaccine education, immunization programs can minimize the many health and productivity costs of vaccine-preventable diseases while supporting the health of individuals and the wider community.
Promote Seasonal Flu Prevention (1 point)
The following requirements are met:
Projects provide one of the following vaccine programs:
- Annual on-site seasonal influenza (flu) vaccine at no cost or subsidized by at least 50% to eligible employees and students (as applicable) starting at least one month prior to peak flu season in the project region.
- Health insurance coverage or voucher for flu vaccination at no cost or subsidized by at least 50%, including paid time during the workday to receive immunization for seasonal influenza.
- Alerts eligible employees and students (as applicable) regarding the availability of on-site flu vaccine clinic, coverage or vouchers and encourages or incentivizes individuals to receive the vaccine.
- Provides education for eligible employees and students (as applicable) on the health reasons to receive the vaccine, good hand hygiene and cough etiquette.
- Encourages eligible employees and students (as applicable) with flu-like symptoms to stay home through communications from leadership and managers, and provides teleworking options and/or designated sick leave time.
- Vaccine program is accompanied by a seasonal flu prevention campaign that covers the following:
Note: On-site immunization may be provided through a temporary vaccine clinic run by an outside organization, internal occupational health staff or other arrangement.
Prevention campaign must be culturally appropriate and literacy level appropriate. Campaign materials can come in the form of trainings, brochures, videos, posters, pamphlets, newsletters and/or other written or online information.
To earn an additional point for WELL Core and MFR Certification, projects should also meet the requirements in all leased spaces.
Implement Immunization Schedule (1 point)
The following requirements are met:
One of the following immunization schedules is fulfilled by all eligible employees and students (as applicable):
- The U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention Recommended Immunization Schedule per age group as appropriate.
- The World Health Organization's Recommendations for Routine Immunization.
If full immunization schedule has not been fulfilled, eligible employees and students or guardians are provided education on the specific immunization(s) of need and direction on where to go to receive the immunization(s).
© International WELL Building Institute
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