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Influenza Sick Leave Policy

Although no one knows how severe the pandemic H1N1 influenza will be, Misericordia University is taking proactive steps to maintain a safe and healthy environment for our students, employees, and visitors as well as to ensure the continuity of business operations in the event of a severe pandemic. The following policies are intended to achieve these goals.

Good Hygiene and Infection Control Practices
To maintain a healthy environment, Misericordia University encourages all students and employees to cover their mouths when they cough and their noses when they sneeze, throw out used tissues immediately and wash hands frequently. Misericordia University will provide alcohol-based hand sanitizer throughout the campus for your use. Additionally, we will ensure that routine cleaning of commonly touched surfaces will be performed regularly.

Staying Home When Sick
One of the best ways to reduce the spread of influenza is for students and employees to stay home while they are ill and/or are experiencing the following symptoms:

  • A fever that is equal to or greater than 100 degrees Fahrenheit or 38 degrees Celsius when taken with a thermometer. Possible signs of a fever which can include; feeling very warm, a flushed appearance, sweating or chills in the absence of a known cause other than influenza
  • AND a cough or sore throat in the absence of a known cause other than influenza
  • AND/OR runny nose, body aches, headache, tiredness, diarrhea or vomiting in the absence of a known cause other than influenza.

Any employee who is exhibiting symptoms of a flu-like illness should stay home and report off from work. Employees should remain home for at least 24 hours after their fever (100 degrees F (or 37.8 degrees C) or greater) has resolved. This should be determined without the use of fever-reducing medications (any medication that contains ibuprofen or acetaminophen).

Misericordia University provides employees with paid sick time to compensate employees who are unable to work due to illness. However, in the event that an employee who has influenza and/or is experiencing influenza-like symptoms does not have sufficient sick leave to cover the absence, Misericordia University will permit the employee to borrow sick time from the following year’s entitlement.

Reporting Off Due to Influenza
A staff member who is absent from work for a flu-like illness must call and report the absence directly to his/her supervisor no later than the start of the normal work day, informing the supervisor of the reason the employee is unable to work. Supervisor should then report the flu-like illness to Charlotte Slocum, Director of the Health Center.

A faculty member who is absent from work for a flu-like illness must call and report the absence directly to the VP Academic Affairs office, informing them of the reason they are unable to work. The VP of Academic Affairs office will report any flu-like illness to Charlotte Slocum, Director of the Health Center.

This is to protect our employees and students from H1N1 and to decide whether the institution needs to take any action because of widespread illness.

Request for Doctor’s Note or Medical Exam
Any employee who is absent from work under this policy for five (5) or more consecutive days or hospitalized for a flu-like illness and/or resulting from complications, will be required to furnish a doctor’s note to their Dean or supervisor releasing him/her to return to work before he/she may return to work.

Miscellaneous
The University reserves the authority to send any employee home who is exhibiting any symptoms of a flu-like illness.

Vaccinations
Misericordia University offers voluntary flu vaccinations and H1N1 vaccinations as supplies are available. Employees are responsible for the cost of the vaccination.

Misericordia University may amend or supplement this policy as needed.

10-16-2009

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