The Job Where People Need the Most Time Off

Generally, how much time people get off from work is determined by their companies. This can cover periods that are relatively short, which is generally two weeks, and those that are much longer, at as much as a month. Sometimes the number of years someone has been an employee is taken into account. The national average, according to the BLS, is 10 days. Another factor is state laws that may mandate the number of vacation days.

People in the U.S. tend to get fewer days of vacation than people in many other developed countries. Americans tend to get little mandated vacation days, while workers in France and the U.K. have mandated periods of over two weeks.

Another factor that determines “time off” is not related to vacation. It is based on the much less pleasant issue of how much time people have to be away from their jobs for injury and illness. There were 2.7 million nonfatal workplace injuries and illnesses among private-industry employees in 2020, a drop of 5.7% from 2.8 million in 2019, the Bureau of Labor Statistics reported in November. The estimates, complicated by the COVID-19 pandemic, came from the Survey of Occupational Injuries and Illnesses.

To determine the industry where workers needed the most time off for injury and illness in 2020, 24/7 Wall St. reviewed U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics report Injuries, Illnesses, and Fatalities. Occupations were ranked by the incidence rate of nonfatal occupational injuries and illnesses involving days away from work per 10,000 full-time equivalent workers. Employment and wage data also came from the BLS. Miscellaneous occupations were not considered.

The pandemic has affected the results. Total reported illness cases more than quadrupled in 2020 to 544,600 cases, up from 127,200 in 2019. This was driven by a 4,000% spike in employer-reported respiratory illness cases to 428,700 in 2020, up from 10,800 in 2019.

Over the same period, the BLS said the rate of illness cases soared to 55.9 cases per 10,000 full-time equivalent workers from 12.4 cases per 10,000. The increase was driven by the surge in the respiratory illness rate, which rose to 44.0 cases per 10,000 full-time equivalent workers from 1.1 cases per 10,000.

The job where people need the most time off is dietetic technicians. Here are the details:

> Rate of occupational injury and illness: 3,199.3 per 10,000 workers
> Total cases: 5,850
> Total full-time workers: 26,430
> Annual median wage: $32,920

Click here to see all the jobs where people need the most time off.

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