3 reasons you should offer sick days to employees
Though three-fourths of Americans view paid sick days as a basic workers’ right, just 57 percent of veterinary team members report receiving them. According to a study by the National Opinion Research Center at the University of Chicago, failing to provide sick days for employees can harm their health—and your veterinary practice.
According to the study, nearly one in six people have lost a job for taking time off to deal with a personal or family issue. The issue affects workers of all demographics and can have major consequences on public health, says Deborah Leff, president of the Public Welfare Foundation.
“More than 40 million working Americans do not get even one paid sick day,” Leff says. “We can see from this survey that not having paid sick days drives up the costs of healthcare and means that more people go to work sick, creating public health risks for everyone.”
Here are three of the biggest reasons it’s important to provide sick days:
1. They prevent diseases from spreading. According to the survey, 55 percent of those without paid sick days have gone to work with a contagious disease, compared to 37 percent of those with paid sick days.
2. They keep healthcare costs low. The survey found that 20 percent of those without paid sick days used hospital emergency rooms because they couldn’t take time off, compared with 10 percent of workers with sick days.
3. They help kids stay healthy. Twenty-four percent of workers without sick days sent a sick child to school, compared to 14 percent of people with sick days.
According to the survey—which included 1,461 phone calls to randomly selected participants—paid sick leave (held by 64 percent of workers) is the least common benefit for American employees, behind health insurance (81 percent), dental insurance (72 percent), life insurance (68 percent), and pensions (67 percent).
Do you offer sick time for your employees? See the related links below for more on why you should—and how you can monitor staff usage.