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by Abigail Van Buren

How to Help Reduce Spread of the Flu

DEAR ABBY: I understand that a person should stay home when he or she is sick in order to avoid spreading the illness to others. However, if you have plans with a friend, and your brother or sister has the flu but you have not gotten sick yet, is it your responsibility to warn your friend that you have been exposed? Should you cancel plans? I mean, what's the considerate thing to do in this situation? -- CAREFUL IN WASHINGTON

DEAR CAREFUL: In a case like this, full disclosure is imperative. If you know you have been exposed to a contagious illness and may be carrying the bug, the considerate thing to do would be to tell your friend so the person has the choice of whether to opt out.

Read more in: Etiquette & Ethics | Health & Safety | Friends & Neighbors