Nurses and Doctors Sick With COVID Feel Pressured to Get Back to Work

August 13, 2020 by Christen Aldrich

Filed under COVID-19 for Employers, COVID-19 for the Workforce

Last modified August 14, 2020

A new article presented by Kaiser Health News examines the immense pressure workers who contract COVID-19 have to return to work sooner than public health standards suggest it’s safe for them, their colleagues or their patients. Some employers have failed to provide adequate paid leave, if any at all, so employees felt they had to return to work — even with coughs and possibly infectious — rather than forfeit the paycheck they need to feed their families.

In a survey of nearly 1,200 health workers who are members of Health Professionals and Allied Employees Union, roughly a third of those who said they had gotten sick responded that they had to return to work while still symptomatic.  An investigation by Kern Health News and The Guardian has identified at least 875 front-line health workers who have died of COVID-19, likely exposed to the virus at work during the pandemic.

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