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The Forum > Article Comments > In sickness and in health > Comments

In sickness and in health : Comments

By Joel Bevin, published 6/2/2009

Although valid cases obviously exist, why should individuals who are lax in taking care of themselves be afforded the luxury of sick leave?

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Your light-hearted comments take no account of the possibility of serious illness. I took no more than 4 or 5 days over 22 years, then had a rotten year which took me to hospital 6 times with four major illnesses. (True, I was able to do some work while recuperating in the hospitals.) People are foolish to use up their sick leave before they need it.
Posted by ozbib, Friday, 6 February 2009 9:39:49 PM
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ozbib,

You were lucky that your employer did not heed the external consultant's advice to restructure. This is code for showing you and others like you with high outstanding credits of sick leave and other entitlements the door and contracting the work out to the consultant's cannon fodder in your stead. Consultants call that 'adding value'.

Managing absence? The external consultant has a generic solution there too (at a price), but first a 'problem' has to be identified.
Posted by Cornflower, Friday, 6 February 2009 11:38:59 PM
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Joel thinks he has found the key to everlasting health if only he eats right and exercises etc. I bought into the claims of the health girus once too but two decades and more life experience later I know that while this may have protective benefits it wonít make you as bulletproof to things going wrong in your body as you may think.

In reality it is medical science that has extended our lives dramatically in the Western world in the last century more than diet or exercise. Penicillin for example and antibiotics that you may have been treated with for what you considered to be something of minor consequence. Like an infected tooth or boil or infected scratch or sore. The reality is that these infections would have gone on to kill you with out modern medicines.

In the early decades of last century there was no vaccination agains killers like diptheria,tetanus, tuberculosios etc. thatís why huge numbers barely made it to their adulthood . The ones that did survive to old age were the genetically strongest. People survive to old age today because they were protected by medical science(vaccination) against diseases.

I still eat healthy and do moderate exercise but I know that a blood vessel can burst or any little thing go wrong in the complex human body at any moment regardless.
Doctors themselves come to understand that a lot of things go wrong with the human body that medical science still does not understand and that they canít give people any real cure for except trial and error with medication to see what may help.

Joel only has this attitude because he thinks he will never be in a negative no win position with his health. Donít be too sure.
Posted by sharkfin, Saturday, 7 February 2009 4:15:08 PM
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I prefer that if someone is sick, they do not come to work and cough and splutter over me. If you are contagious or repulsively ill, please stay home.
Posted by fancynancy, Saturday, 7 February 2009 6:14:57 PM
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The article reminds me of the true story of a senior manager (and 'almost a partner') of one of the big bean counter firms. This fellow was forever exhorting staff to keep fit and not 'weaken' in the face of illness (which was mainly in the mind, he said). He set an example by jogging through the city in his lunch time, all in lycra, Nikes and sweat band.

One day all who knew him received an email to say that he had been found 'jogless' in a park, dead. That dark but witty email must have reached hundreds of people, clients included, in minutes. Like all indispensable people he was replaced in a trice and was 'He Whose Name Shall Not Be Mentioned' before the next payday.

Talk about 'weak' (sic), he died before his 40th birthday leaving a wife and two children in prep school. I wonder if they docked him for that final half day absence without a medical certificate.
Posted by Cornflower, Sunday, 8 February 2009 2:58:41 AM
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If as I understand "sick leave" to be part of a salary package, why can't it be a negotiable item when being employed?
Choice then can be made about whether "full pay" is to be paid when sickness overcomes one, no pay another, or whatever. The rare times I was sick while employed I needed full pay to feed my family. Times have changed and now maybe negotiations could include some insurance scheme negotiated?
fluff
Posted by fluff4, Monday, 9 February 2009 10:39:21 AM
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