12 March 2012
More than half of Australians believe co-workers with flu symptoms should stay at home to prevent the virus spreading but 9 out of 10 have shown up to work while sick anyway, according to a new survey.
The survey of 1,068 people by the Influenza Specialist Group found the main reason people gave for battling on was feeling they would let their colleagues down (20 per cent) if they stayed home, while others were worried about work building up or missing deadlines (19 per cent).
Almost 20 per cent of respondents said they didn't believe flu symptoms were a serious enough reason to stay home and only 40 per cent said they would call a doctor if they thought they had the flu.
In fact, the majority of respondents (84 per cent) had never used anti-viral medicines from the doctor when they had the flu. The most popular treatments were over the counter medications from the chemist (47 per cent) and hot lemon drinks or chicken soup (18 per cent).
The survey also showed turning up to work with the sniffles would annoy co-workers who believe a person with flu symptoms should stay home (61 per cent), will feel annoyed or frustrated when people go about their daily activities while sick (56 per cent) and worry about their own health as a result (36 per cent).
All this frustration is unlikely to be resolved though, with just 10 per cent of respondents saying they would tell a person with the flu to minimise contact with others.
Around Australia, Victorians were the most likely to see a doctor for flu symptoms (46 per cent), Tasmanians were the most likely to go to work (95 per cent) and people in the Northern Territory were the least likely to cancel social commitments due to the flu (71 per cent).
Last Reviewed: 12 March 2012