Sick Workers Should Stay Home

07.10.09 | FL News Team

If you're sick, stay home from work. That's a prescription ordered by Dr. Mary Capelli-Schellpfeffer, medical director of Loyola University's Health System Occupational Health Services. The doctor says people think the heroic thing to do is go in and "work through the pain." She says the contrary is true. People who go to work sick are more likely to hinder than help their company. There's a risk of illness being passed to co-workers just by being in the room with them. While that may seem obvious to many, the doctor says illness in the workplace can also affect how outsiders see the company. Walking into a business to be greeted by someone coughing and sneezing can, she says, cause people to look at an organization in a negative way.


Some employees think calling in sick might be an automatic job-killer in the current economy. The doctor encourages managers to make sure employees know using sick days won't be penalized. She says despite the ebb and flow of news stories about the flu, it is not going away and "most likely will only get worse this fall." The doctor strongly recommends employers institute a flu shot program as an investment that can yield big returns.