U.S. workers with access to paid sick leave are 28 percent less likely than those without sick leave to suffer non-fatal work-related injuries, officials say.
Researchers at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention's National Institute for Occupational Safety and Health analyzed data from 2005 to 2008 collected by the National Health Interview Survey.
The study considered 38,000 private sector workers only because most full-time public sector workers have access to paid sick leave, the researchers said.
The study found workers in high-risk occupations, and industry sectors such as construction, manufacturing, agriculture and healthcare and social assistance, appeared to benefit most from access to paid sick leave.
Workers in these sectors commonly experience muscle soreness, pain, sprains, strains and tears; fractures; cuts and lacerations; or more chronic injuries including herniated discs, cartilage damage and spinal cord injuries, the study said.
The study, published in the American Journal of Public Health, found healthcare practitioners and technicians without access to paid sick leave were 18 percent more likely to suffer a non-fatal work-related injury than workers in the same jobs who have access to paid sick leave.
A construction worker without access to paid sick leave was 21 percent more likely to suffer a non-fatal work related injury than a construction worker with access to paid sick leave.