A survey that includes many of the Fortune 500 companies and was conducted by International SOS, the world’s leading medical and travel security risk services company, finds that in spite of the unprecedented Ebola outbreak, an overwhelming majority (83%) expect the flu to impact their business more than Ebola in the coming months. Furthermore, less than a third of companies surveyed has had an employee request to change their travel plans or declined to travel due to this global outbreak.
International SOS helps organizations manage health and safety risks facing their travelers and globally mobile workforces. In its latest survey, it canvassed the opinions of more than 300 companies that are responding to the Ebola outbreak and asked each to identify the measures they have put in place in their organization. The top measures cited were:
1)Communicated with employees on preventing Ebola – 30%
2)Held a crisis planning meeting or something similar – 22%
3)Put international travel restrictions in place – 18%
4)Identified and tracked employees in affected areas – 16%
Additionally, when asked what the number one challenge in responding to the Ebola outbreak their organization faced, 35% said keeping up to date with the latest information, and 18% said managing employee travel plans.
“The survey confirms what we’ve seen with a number of our clients recently,” said Dr. Robert Quigley, Senior Vice President of Medical Assistance for International SOS. “When a medical outbreak like this occurs and highlights international exposure, organizations need help in deciphering fact from fiction.”
“Organizations with dispersed, global workforces must be prepared,” Quigley added. “Ebola is front of mind today, but you must be prepared for the next, and oftentimes unexpected, event. Having a well-thought plan can help drive an appropriate response.”
As part of their response to the Ebola virus outbreak, International SOS launched a new microsite (https://www.internationalsos.com/ebola/) to provide members of the public with updates and critical information.
“The Ebola outbreak has served as a wake-up call for many organizations to revisit and update their emergency preparedness plans,” said Quigley. “A thorough plan enables companies to mitigate the risk associated with the outbreak of the disease and is critical in maintaining business continuity when such situations occur.”
SOURCE International SOS