Seasonal flu (also known as influenza) is a highly infectious illness caused by the flu virus. It spreads rapidly through small droplets coughed or sneezed into the air by an infected person.
Studies have shown that flu vaccines provide effective protection against the flu, although protection may not be complete and may vary between people. Protection from the vaccine gradually decreases and flu strains change over time. Therefore, new vaccines are made each year and people at risk of flu are encouraged to be vaccinated every year.
For most people, seasonal flu is unpleasant but not serious. You will usually recover within a week.
However, certain people are at greater risk of developing serious complications of flu,such as bronchitisand pneumonia. These conditions may even require hospital treatment.
It is recommended that you have a flu jab if you:
- are 65 years old or over
- are pregnant
- have a serious medical condition
- are living in a long-stay residential care home or other long-stay care facility (not including prisons, young offender institutions or university halls of residence)
- are the main carer for an elderly or disabled person whose welfare may be at risk if you fall ill
- are a frontline health or social care worker
As a private landlord or letting agent the types of people and ages that you deal with will range from young to old, the healthy to the infirm, etc.
With winter fast approaching, it can certainly be a worry regarding your older/elderly tenants and their well-being, especially if you are planning to go away over the holidays (so you won’t see them/be able to check on them) and/or tenants generally not taking care of themselves as much as maybe they should do.
As landlords ourselves we know it’s a hard job and at times very unrewarding, but at LandlordReferencing we truly believe that without our good tenants there would be no such thing as “the private landlord”, and take our landlord duty of care very seriously.
Therefore we urge you to put atleast one of our tips to use, because I’m sure atleast half of you out there have atleast one tenant who doesn’t have many/any close friends or family and would really appreciate someone taking an interest in their well-being.
Also, if you are a landlord to a block of apartments/flats influenza typically strikes from late autumn through to spring. A possible explanation for the high influenza virus activity in the wintertime is that people congregate indoors during winter and this enables the virus to spread from person to person. Therefore you do not want all your tenants to become infected and have an excuse not to go to work and then, in-turn, not be able to pay their rent either.
So these ideas may seem like a waste of time to you now, but wouldn’t you rather take the time to do this now, rather than in a months time ending up with lots of tenants who can’t pay their rent because they haven’t been to work, due to being ill?
- Ensure all building regulations are up-to-date, and all repair issues (i.e. roof, damp, windows, etc) have been dealt with before winter comes.
- Go to your local GP and pick up some free “Why you should have the flu vaccination” to distribute to your tenants.
OR: download them.
- Promote good health and healthy eating, e.g. put up posters, in your office/property.
If you have any other ideas please feel free to leave them as a comment below.