In a milestone on the road to safer workplaces, Citigroup will begin the first mass vaccination effort for its employees worldwide. Starting next month, employees are encouraged to get up to two vaccines on company time to reduce the risk of contracting cervical cancer and meningitis — the two largest meningitis types in the United States — though it’s worth noting that neither disease appears to be a worry.
Citigroup is one of the largest U.S. employers, with about 300,000 people on its payroll. It will soon join a very few big employers, including GoDaddy, which became the first public company to require the vaccinations, in this new foray of the federal government into the realm of workplace health. The total cost to Citigroup is unknown.
Vaccines are becoming more common in the U.S. But only 3 to 5 percent of the non-pregnant population has ever received any vaccines, and those who do are much less likely to remember their course. Once a long, arduous process, the process of getting vaccines has been simplified with a much-slower process of getting the combined three doses: two during yearly checkups and one at the doctor’s office for the midpoint of a patient’s life span.
These changes have benefits for the individual, too. If you get your first dose at a regular doctor’s appointment, this means that you are less likely to forget to take your next one, to become ill or to miss work because of side effects. But they also have advantages for the employer. Workers can be more productive, and by limiting health risks for children and other vulnerable groups, they make for a more inclusive workplace.
The one-dose vaccination, recommended for teens and young adults, will now become standard at Citigroup. The two-dose version will be offered on the same regimen for older employees.
But one thing may very well remain the same: Citi’s policy will likely be the first of its kind.
Read the full story from The Wall Street Journal here.
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