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Absenteeism and presenteeism in healthcare workers due to respiratory illness


Abstract

Objective:
To assess influenza symptoms, adherence to mask use recommendations, absenteesm and presenteeism in acute care healthcare workers (HCWs) during influenza epidemics.
Methods:
The TransFLUas influenza transmission study in acute healthcare prospectively followed HCWs prospectively over 2 consecutive influenza seasons. Symptom diaries asking for respiratory symptoms and adherence with mask use recommendations were recorded on a daily basis, and study participants provided midturbinate nasal swabs for influenza testing.
Results:
In total, 152 HCWs (65.8% nurses and 13.2% physicians) were included: 89.1% of study participants reported at least 1 influenza symptom during their study season and 77.8% suffered from respiratory symptoms. Also, 28.3% of HCW missed at least 1 working day during the study period: 82.6% of these days were missed because of symptoms of influenza illness. Of all participating HCWs, 67.9% worked with symptoms of influenza infection on 8.8% of study days. On 0.3% of study days, symptomatic HCWs were shedding influenza virus while at work. Among HCWs with respiratory symptoms, 74.1% adhered to the policy to wear a mask at work on 59.1% of days with respiratory symptoms.
Conclusions:
Respiratory disease is frequent among HCWs and imposes a significant economic burden on hospitals due to the number of working days lost. Presenteesm with respiratory illness, including influenza, is also frequent and poses a risk for patients and staff.
Trial registration:

NCT02478905 (clinicaltrials.gov)

Abstract

Objective:
To assess influenza symptoms, adherence to mask use recommendations, absenteesm and presenteeism in acute care healthcare workers (HCWs) during influenza epidemics.
Methods:
The TransFLUas influenza transmission study in acute healthcare prospectively followed HCWs prospectively over 2 consecutive influenza seasons. Symptom diaries asking for respiratory symptoms and adherence with mask use recommendations were recorded on a daily basis, and study participants provided midturbinate nasal swabs for influenza testing.
Results:
In total, 152 HCWs (65.8% nurses and 13.2% physicians) were included: 89.1% of study participants reported at least 1 influenza symptom during their study season and 77.8% suffered from respiratory symptoms. Also, 28.3% of HCW missed at least 1 working day during the study period: 82.6% of these days were missed because of symptoms of influenza illness. Of all participating HCWs, 67.9% worked with symptoms of influenza infection on 8.8% of study days. On 0.3% of study days, symptomatic HCWs were shedding influenza virus while at work. Among HCWs with respiratory symptoms, 74.1% adhered to the policy to wear a mask at work on 59.1% of days with respiratory symptoms.
Conclusions:
Respiratory disease is frequent among HCWs and imposes a significant economic burden on hospitals due to the number of working days lost. Presenteesm with respiratory illness, including influenza, is also frequent and poses a risk for patients and staff.
Trial registration:

NCT02478905 (clinicaltrials.gov)

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Additional indexing

Item Type:Journal Article, refereed, original work
Communities & Collections:04 Faculty of Medicine > Institute of Medical Virology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic and Policlinic for Internal Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Radiation Oncology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Rheumatology Clinic and Institute of Physical Medicine
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Cardiology
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Infectious Diseases
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Reconstructive Surgery
04 Faculty of Medicine > University Hospital Zurich > Clinic for Geriatric Medicine
Dewey Decimal Classification:610 Medicine & health
Scopus Subject Areas:Health Sciences > Epidemiology
Health Sciences > Microbiology (medical)
Health Sciences > Infectious Diseases
Uncontrolled Keywords:Microbiology (medical), Epidemiology, Infectious Diseases
Language:English
Date:26 November 2020
Deposited On:28 Dec 2020 13:57
Last Modified:04 Mar 2021 16:53
Publisher:University of Chicago Press
ISSN:0899-823X
OA Status:Closed
Publisher DOI:https://doi.org/10.1017/ice.2020.444
PubMed ID:33239124

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