How Sick You Are?
April 13, 2010 10 Comments
Sick leaves have been used and abused by workers depending on their health and employer’s firmness. The cost of sick leaves on the U. K. taxpayer is exceeding £11 billion due to different reasons. Work related stress is one of the contributing factors along with workers lifestyle and malingering. The sick leave issues are management concern and health and safety topic. Workers feel the need for sick leaves to revive their mental and physical health. The organization management considers sick leaves as wasted valuable assets. Worker’s lifestyle in workplace or outside affects his/her health. Sleep deprivation can cause fatigue and negative impact on health. Work related stress is because of apprehensions over job security and family finance. Malingering is workers laziness to the point of taking sick leave when not sick.
Workers sickness due to work environment or work stress is a natural phenomena, but workers misuse of such privilege intensifies the debate against general practitioners (medical doctors) issuing the sick leaves. A survey showed that 80% of the general practitioners did not want the responsibility of writing sick leaves. The general practitioners are generally busy on more important issues that force them to write the sick leave without careful consideration.
Many of us have different justifications for taking sick leave when they are not sick. We have to ask ourselves how do we feel if our employees, whom we pay their salaries from our pockets, used the same justifications for taking one or two days off. For example, if we have a driver or housekeeper that declare that they are sick today and they got the official sick leave from the doctor to prove it? And they make this announcement to you just before you leave to work! How would you fee? What would be your reaction if they repeat the sick leave once every week?
Cumulative sleep debt on rotating night shifts. (2005). Nursing Standard, 19(43), 18.
Duffin, C. (2004). Staff take less sick leave with flexible shift system. Nursing Standard, 18(33), 7.
Sicknote pressure could backfire on business. (2004). Management Services, 48(6), 6.