Sick staff at work cost firms more than absenteeism

Employees who go to work when they are sick cost employers far more than
absenteeism or disability leave, according to a recent study published in the
US Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine.

Researchers used estimates from a database of about 375,000 employees, which
included information on insurance claims for medical care and short-term
disability over three years, and combined it with productivity surveys for 10
health conditions that most commonly affect workers.

Researchers at the Cornell University Institute for Health and Productivity
Studies (IHPS) estimated that companies’ on-the-job productivity losses from
presenteeism could be as high as 60 per cent of the total cost of worker illness.

It said that where companies pay health benefits, sickness costs £144 per
employee per year.

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