2106 - Influenza Season



Audience List

  • Agency Secretaries
  • Chief Deputy Directors
  • Department Directors
  • Employee Relations Officers
  • Personnel Officers
  • Personnel Transactions Supervisors


This policy

  • Provides guidelines for departments on absences that may occur due to the influenza (flu) season.
  • Provides options for departments to consider in order to assist employees who are off work due to the flu illness.
  • Provides recommendations from the Department of Public Health and the Center for Disease Control and Prevention regarding the flu illness and actions to prevent the spread of illnesses.


This policy statement provides guidance and information regarding absences that occur during the influenza season.


For prevention and management of illness in the workplace, the California Department of Human Resources (CalHR) recommends the following guidelines for departments to use for absences that may occur due to the influenza (flu) season.

If employees show signs of flu symptoms, (fever and cough, sore throat, or runny nose) departments should manage the employees the same way they would if they had other illnesses by encouraging the employees to stay home or go home.

Departments are reminded to review the provisions for leave usage, return to work, and medical verification in the appropriate collective bargaining agreements. The following types of leaves may be available for employees to use while off work due to illness:

  • Sick Leave
  • Vacation
  • Annual Leave
  • Furlough Hours
  • Personnel Leave Program
  • Compensating Time Off
  • Voluntary Personal Leave Program
  • Holiday Credits
  • Catastrophic Leave
  • Non-Industrial Disability Insurance
  • State Disability Insurance
  • Family Medical Leave Act
  • California Family Rights Act

CalHR’s Leave Benefits webpage provides guidance on the use of the above leaves. Departments should review their catastrophic leave policy for employees that have no leave balances or have exhausted their leave balances.

In addition, to minimize the impact on operations, departments may consider the following options to assist employees who are off work due to their own illness or a family member’s illness, but are still able to perform work duties:

  • Telework
  • Alternate Work Week
  • Flextime (refer to collective bargaining agreements for represented employees)

Based on recommendations from the California Department of Public Health (CDPH) and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, CalHR provides links in the Resources section below which provide information and actions to assist in preventing the spread of illnesses such as the flu.

In regard to other miscellaneous flu viruses or diseases, departments should follow the above guidelines for absences that may occur due to these illnesses. Additional information and actions to prevent the spread of these illnesses are provided in the links below.

Should a state agency have a concern that an individual employee poses a risk to other employees, they should contact the local health department in their jurisdiction for further guidance. A list of local health departments and their contact phone number are available in the Resources section below.


Not Applicable.




  • PML 2009-037: PML 2009-037 - 8/31/2009 - Update on the H1N1 Virus
  • PML 2014-039: PML 2014-039 - 11/6/2014 - Ebola Virus Disease Information
  • PML 2014-045: PML 2014-045 - 11/17/2014 - 2014-15 Influenza Season

Related Policies

  • 1410: State Disability Insurance (SDI)
  • 1411: Non-Industrial Disability Insurance (NDI)
  • 2102: Annual Leave
  • 2103: Vacation
  • 2105: Sick Leave
  • 2107: Family Medical Leave Act / California Family Rights Act
  • 2109: Holidays for Excluded Employees
  • 2113: Personal Leave Program (PLP)
  • 2114: Voluntary Personal Leave Program (VPLP)
  • 2116: Catastrophic Leave

Web Pages

Authorized By

Melissa Russell
Chief, Personnel Management Division

Contact Person

Personnel Services Branch
Personnel Program Consultant , Personnel Services Branch
Phone: 916-909-3702
Fax: 916-327-1886
Email: psb@calhr.ca.gov

Superseded Policies

Not Applicable.


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Table of Contents

1000 - Equal Employment Opportunity

1100 - Selection

1200 - Appointments

1300 - Exempt Employees

1400 - Benefits and Insurance

1500 - Work Schedules

1600 - Third Party Pre-Tax Parking

1700 - Compensation

1800 - Savings Plus

1900 - Bona Fide Associations

2000 - Collective Bargaining

2100 - Leave

2200 - Travel/Relocation

2300 - State Owned Housing

2400 - Employee Recognition

2600 - Layoffs

2700 - Retirement

2800 - Training

2900 - Workforce Planning

3000 - Examination and Hiring

3100 - Drug-Free Workplace

3200 - Medical Screening

3300 - Apprenticeships

3400 - Temporary Assignment

3500 - Classification Plan