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How Many Paid Sick Days Are Enough?

DeRigne, LeaAnne PhD; Stoddard-Dare, Patricia PhD; Quinn, Linda M. PhD; Collins, Cyleste PhD

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: June 2018 - Volume 60 - Issue 6 - p 481–489
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000001300

Objective: This study analyzes the relationship between number of paid sick days and reported preventive health care service usage among older US workers.

Methods: Using a 2014 cross-section of 3235 US workers age 49 to 57 from the National Longitudinal Survey of Youth, this study is the first to measure paid sick leave as an ordinal variable in an effort to refine our understanding of sick leave, and identify the ideal range of sick days necessary for people to access preventive health care services.

Results: We find workers with 10 or more paid sick days have increased odds of reporting five different preventive health care services.

Conclusion: To support worker and public health, policy planners may want to consider the number of paid sick days that are needed before changes in preventive service use are observed.

Florida Atlantic University, Boca Raton, Florida (Dr DeRigne); and Cleveland State University, Cleveland, Ohio (Dr Stoddard-Dare, Dr Quinn, Dr Collins).

Address correspondence to: LeaAnne DeRigne, PhD, Florida Atlantic University, 777 Glades Rd, Boca Raton, FL, 33431 (

Funding: None.

Authors DeRigne, Stoddard-Dare, Quinn, and Collins have no relationships/conditions/circumstances that present potential conflict of interest.

The JOEM editorial board and planners have no financial interest related to this research.

Copyright © 2018 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine