Swine flu: bad news and senseless ads

Now that we’ve had our first swine flu-related deaths in New Zealand, perhaps it’s time the Coldrex TV ad was altered to make it clear that it isn’t okay to take a pill to relieve the symptoms of the flu and then carry on your merry way to work, infecting all and sundry with your nasty germs. 

You know the ad, with the dude at the bus stop sneezing and snotting all over the other guy, who smugly proclaims he has the flu, too, but has taken a pill so he can go back to work. Of course, while Mr Smug Git isn’t sneezing or feeling particularly miserable any more because the medication has treated the symptoms, it hasn’t treated the actual virus. He still has the flu and he can still give it to the rest of us. 

Even without the swine flu drama, these types of ads piss me off.  Most sensible and decent employers try to get the message across to their staff that if they are sick, stay home. Especially if it’s something contagious like projectile diarrhoea. Or the flu. 

Let’s be honest, it has to be better from an employer’s point of view to have one person off work for the full 10 to 14 days it’s likely to take to recover from the flu than have them take a day off then come back and infect the rest of the office. 

So come on Coldrex, how about an ad that also includes the clear message that you are still full of germs, even if you’re no longer full of snot.

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