Wednesday, December 9, 2009

This Holiday Season Even Santa is Scared of the Swine Flu

cross-posted from the PathWays PA Policy Blog

If you take your children to see Santa for the holidays this year, he may first inquire about your health. As Santa Claus works in malls and shops to spread the holiday spirit, he and his helpers are taking extra precautions this year to ensure they do not contract or spread H1N1.

Thousands of children line up every day to tell Santa what they want for the holidays, bringing him into contact with more children than virtually any other profession during this season. Unfortunately, for some Santas, getting the H1N1 vaccine is difficult. It is in limited supply and Santa is not officially in the high-risk group as defined by the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC).

Other precautions in place this year include Santa being asked not to wear his white gloves, so that he can better use hand sanitizer. Many Santas are encouraging children to sanitize their hands before meeting Santa as well. Santa is also having his suit cleaned more frequently than in most years. Finally, if parents notice their child is sick, they should not bring him or her to see Santa until they are better.

Whether or not your family will be visiting Santa, the holiday season brings an excellent opportunity to ask Congress for a “present:” the ability to earn sick time and access to health care. What will you be asking for this year?


Image courtesy of http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/File:SantasLap.jpg

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