The Cost of Flu to the Economy

Many people do not consider flu to be a very serious viral infection. This misunderstands the illness because it is often controlled by home-made remedies and over the counter drugs.

These are the main reasons why large numbers of people do not take the vaccination against the flu. However, flu can be a very illness leading to many days in bed and even loss of life. In business terms it can cost billions. The countries that experience wet, cold winters are the most affected by the occurrence and spread of flu among their populations. 

Flu and the economy

Absenteeism is causes major losses to industry and commerce each year. Even though flu is easy to treat and lasts for a relatively short period, extreme flu cases can be serious and could even be deadly.

Many people are susceptible to catching a flu especially through interaction with infected people. One of the reasons id that not everyone is prepared to have the flu vaccination each year.

There is a school of thought that believes the flu vaccination offers less than a 50% protection because the nature of the virus changes year on year. Exposure to people with the infection is the only way to catch flu – it is a common misconception that flu can be caused by exposure to cold.

The virus is often confused for a cold because the two share most of the symptoms. The virus is however more dangerous because it is debilitating and can lead to other infections and even pneumonia. These further infections lead to increased time off work while recovery takes place.

Effects of absenteeism

Losing employees through illness can have an adverse effect your business or your employers business.

• Absenteeism can negatively affect the overall performance of the business and loss of business opportunities. When employees are absent through illness their colleagues are required to put in extra effort and longer hours. Potentially this leads to loss of efficiency, effectiveness and even loss of customers.

• Absenteeism due to flu may require businesses to pay extra for the increased number of hours the other workers are putting in. The employer may also be required to pay temporary staff as replacements as a result of absences


The flu virus leads to billions of losses to the world economy every year. This is due to absenteeism of workforce and the related effects of absenteeism. It is important that people, especially those that experience cold and wet winter seasons, to take the vaccinations against the virus in order to reduce the losses made annually.

Reducing absenteeism at your place of work or in your business will improve the health of your business. 

Mayfair, we care.