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The true burden of flu on working parents

Dr. Julia Tainijoki-Seyer

- 10/11/2016
Medical Advisor of the World Medical Association

Come mid-November, having just about recovered from juggling work with looking after their kids during the summer holidays, working parents are faced with a new challenge – the flu.

Full of concern, they anxiously look out for signs that their kids have caught the bug: sore throats, earache and fever. At the first indication, the youngsters must be kept home from day care or school to avoid spreading the virus to their playmates.

Familiar story?

Familiar story?For working parents, it all too often turns into a scramble to find someone to care for their kids. Some are fortunate enough to have healthy family or friends to rely on. For others, if they’re unable to work at home, the only other option is to take days off from work. This can mean days away – something many parents can’t afford.

Around a quarter of kids catch the flu each year; the majority of them missing between three and 12 days from school or day care, and their siblings missing between one and six days. And with the flu frequently resulting in complications, the most common of which is ear infections, doctor visits, even hospitalization, can enter the picture.

Flu is a serious illness that can wreak havoc on the lives of parents and children.