Swine Flu

[From Ha-Rav's Video Blog]

Because of the outbreak of Swine Flu, one doctor requested that we ask the public not to kiss the mezuzah on the door of the health clinic (which many have in Israel) since it may transmit the illness. If this is so, then we should also refrain from kissing the mezuzah in hospitals and, in fact, everywhere. There is no halachah that we must kiss the mezuzah. It is an expression of our love of the mitzvah. Kissing the mezuzah is not mentioned in the Shulchan Aruch. What is mentioned is placing your hand on it when leaving and entering (285:2 in the Rama). It is possible that there is no concern of transferring the illness by simply touching it but one should not put his hand to his mouth afterwards. The essence is not kissing or touching the mezuzah, the essence is fulfilling what is written within it as the Rambam says at the end of Hilchot Mezuzah (6:13) that one should distance himself from the vanities of time and cling to the Master of the Universe. And may the following be fulfilled through us: "Heal us, Hashem and we will be healed, save us and we will be save" (from the "Shemoneh Esrei").