H1N1 concerns at work

As the commercial goes, do I stay or do I go?
If a co-worker's spouse has been diagnosed with H1N1 and the co-worker does not show symptoms, what happens next? An employer is in a difficult situation telling an employee to stay away from work, if that employee is not sick. The co-workers are not going to want to take the chance of infection. So does one stay home, or take the risk of many booking a "personal" or "sick" day to avoid contact?

Most people who are of working age are not in the high-risk category. At this time a great percentage of these people will not be protected by vaccination. That being said, what about the customers of your business? If you are a service industry with the general public coming through your doors, then you do have a duty of care to keep them safe.

There was a movie released a few years ago, "Demolition Man" with the premise that in the future, people were afraid to touch each other for fear of spreading germs. Are we starting to see the beginnings of a "touchless society"? Young hockey players do not take off their gloves for the traditional handshake. Now they bump gloves and everyone feels a bit safer.

Is your client comfortable with a handshake? Is your client more comfortable with seeing the hand purifier and the anti-bacterial wipes prominently displayed on your desk?

The Human Resources departments are going to have to consider their options on a case-by-case situation. We can't all stay home until the flu season passes. I have seen at the local Wal-Mart that the person attending the carts, is washing the handles and outside edges of the carts with a strong anti-bacterial. Did someone wipe down all those videos in the under $20 bin?