H1N1, the Swine Flu is the most serious topic du jour. A recent conversation I heard that involved an Air Transportation Association (ATA) official gave me less than full confidence that an airplane can be made safe to breath unless everone is willing to help prevent the spread of airborne germs through sneezing and coughing. At hotels we have more control but we need the help of the managers and housekeepers there.
There is no lack of information about the disease out there: the CDC, WHO and the Federal Pandemic Disease sites are current and full of information: http://www.pandemicflu.gov/
Tips Worth Repeating (from the website above)
Stay informed. This website will be updated regularly as information becomes available.
Influenza is thought to spread mainly person-to-person through coughing or sneezing of infected people.
Take everyday actions to stay healthy.
Cover your nose and mouth with a tissue when you cough or sneeze. Throw the tissue in the trash after you use it.
Wash your hands often with soap and water, especially after you cough or sneeze. Alcohol-based hands cleaners are also effective.
Avoid touching your eyes, nose or mouth. Germs spread that way.
Stay home if you get sick. CDC recommends that you stay home from work or school and limit contact with others to keep from infecting them.
Follow public health advice regarding school closures, avoiding crowds and other social distancing measures.
Develop a family emergency plan as a precaution. This should include storing a supply of food, medicines, facemasks, alcohol-based hand rubs and other essential supplies.
Call 1-800-CDC-INFO for more information.
I would hope and I assume that Marriott is being proactive in dealing with this crisis by ensuring that the rooms are cleaned extremely well and that the soft goods are laundered as well if not better than before.
I am hosting a large meeting next week at a Marriott property and will report on my conversations with both management and hospitality on this important topic.