by By Michael J. Shapiro | November 01, 2009

1109NLR worry plansEven the handshake is being called into question this flu season. Nearly two-thirds of planners would stop shaking hands at events to prevent the spread of germs, and another 21 will encourage attendees to do the same, according to a recent survey by M&C Research.

Of the 133 respondents, 64 percent are somewhat concerned about a pandemic affecting future events; 19 percent are extremely worried. Among precautions they're taking: 74 percent will provide hand-sanitizing gel at meetings, and 60 percent will urge attendees to stay home if they are ill. More than half (52 percent) already have a pandemic response plan or plan to develop one. Thirty-six percent are adding pandemic concerns to their cancellation clauses.

Many respondents already have experienced disruptions due to the threat of flu. Eleven percent have had to cancel or postpone events this year as a result, and 12 percent moved a meeting specifically due to the H1N1 outbreak.

Four percent of respondents have replaced or supplemented live events with videoconferencing or virtual events due to the threat of flu, and another 16 percent are considering doing so.


1109NLR worry radar







 1109NLR chart2