The sickest day of the year: Why most Americans call out of work on August 24

The sickest day of the year: Why most Americans call out of work on August 24

A recent study has found that 24 August is the sickest day of the year in the United States.

In the study shared by Flamingo - a website that tracks the paid time off that workers take at different companies - the company found that most Americans call out of work sick on 24 August.

After researchers analysed paid sick leave data from the last five years from different US-based businesses, it was revealed that the August date holds the title of America’s “sickest” day of the year. The study also noted that the late summer showed a “more significant drop in attendance” than the winter months, which is often associated with cold and flu season.

The second most popular day for Americans to call out sick was 13 February, followed by 25 October and 15 December.

In addition, Flamingo also found that February is the “sickest” month for American workers throughout the last five years. During February, businesses across the US saw an average of 10 per cent of its workforce taking sick time off.

As for the most common reasons for calling out sick, 54 per cent of American workers in the study cited having stomach issues, which included food poisoning or a stomach bug. A 25 per cent of people missed work due to the COVID-19 virus, nine per cent took leave for stress or anxiety, and six per cent took off due to physical injuries.

When giving their bosses notice about taking a sick leave, 54 per cent of Americans opted to do so over text - including using sites such as Slack, WhatsApp, or Messenger. While 33 per cent of workers called their company to say that they were taking a sick day, 12 per cent of Americans gave their notice via email. Only two per cent of workers gave zero notice and didn’t inform their bosses when taking a sick day.

This isn’t the first study to examine how frequently Americans have taken sick days. According to a survey conducted by Statistica in 2020, 30 per cent of adult respondents who either worked or studied did not take any sick leave in the last 12 months.

The number slightly decreased in 2022, with 26 per cent of survey respondents saying that they didn’t take a single sick day that year. Meanwhile, 15 per cent of respondents answered that they took two to three sick days in 2022, while seven per cent took six to 10 days.

Last year, a survey conducted by One Poll - consisting of 2,000 American workers - found that 32 per cent of respondents don’t feel bad when calling out of work, while 36 per cent of respondents are likely to call out of work in the moment they feel sick.

The poll, shared via New York Post, also found that Gen-Z and millennials were most likely to skip work because they are sick, while Gen-X and baby boomers are more willing to work through their sicknesses.