CDC Helps Safeguard Business Travelers from Health Threats
Business Pulse: Travelers’ Health, launched today by the CDC Foundation, provides businesses and corporate travelers a wide range of online resources to help them better prepare for international trips. The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) resources include guidelines, tips and current data to help safeguard travelers against infectious diseases, as well as road hazards and environmental concerns that can sideline personal health and business productivity.
Travel plays an essential role in business and an estimated 5.1 million U.S. residents travel internationally for business each year. However, the extensive business opportunities abroad also pose a variety of potential health risks, including exposure to infectious diseases. To access Business Pulse, visit www.cdcfoundation.org/businesspulse.
While many travelers do not experience health-related issues, traveling abroad can pose risks. Measles outbreaks in the United States are at a 20-year high, and many measles infections have been introduced by unvaccinated travelers. The MERS Coronavirus, that has infected hundreds of people in countries in and near the Arabian Peninsula since 2012, was also confirmed in two travelers to the United States. The mosquito-borne chikungunya virus continues to spread in the Caribbean, and a number of cases in U.S. travelers have recently been reported.
Business travelers often have unique challenges, such as traveling at the last minute and coping with fatigue from jet lag, along with the stress of work responsibilities. In addition to the impact on a business traveler’s personal health, illness and injury during business travel can significantly impact planned business activities and goals, resulting in direct and indirect costs for the company.
“Millions of Americans travel each year, often for business. Illnesses and injuries abroad can sideline not only the traveler but the work they had planned. We encourage all travelers to prepare before they head abroad and educate themselves to help ensure safe, healthy travel,” said CDC Director Tom Frieden, M.D., M.P.H.
This issue of Business Pulse highlights specific international travel challenges faced by businesses as well as a question and answer feature between Lori Zimmerman, M.D., corporate medical director at Citi, and Captain Gary Brunette, M.D., M.S., chief of CDC’s Travelers’ Health branch and editor-in-chief of CDC Health Information for International Travel. Business Pulse: Travelers’ Health also features an interactive infographic that provides useful facts and links, along with online CDC resources.
“With Citi’s presence in over 100 countries and 250,000 global employees, our primary concern is to provide our business travelers, expatriates and short-term assignees with timely pre-travel advice and resources to ensure their safe and healthy travel,” said Zimmerman. “CDC offers resources that help us stay current with global disease outbreaks and ways to connect with CDC leaders through the shared goal of preparing for and responding to global health threats.”
Business Pulse: Travelers’ Health is the fourth in a series of quarterly business features created by the CDC Foundation, an independent nonprofit organization. Other Business Pulse topics to date include business continuity, safe healthcare and global health security.
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