Hangovers cost Australian business $3 billion a year

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Hangovers cost businesses $3 billion a year in absenteeism and make up for 11.5 million sick days, according to new research from the National Centre for Education and Training on Addiction (NCETA) at Flinders University.

It seems Australians are upping the ante on alcohol-related sick days. The uni noted the cost has soared from $1.2 billion a year in 2001.

The uni figured out each missed day costs a company $267.70 (one day’s, wage plus 20% employer on-costs).

NCETA director and lead author Professor Ann Roche said that, in the case of alcohol, often people will have a lot to drink on Friday or Saturday and then be sick on a Monday morning, but not realise their symptoms are the direct result of their partying.

Surveying 12,196 people, participants reported missing a total of 1,688,161 work days due to alcohol and 854,497 days due to drug use. The study noted rates of absence increased with riskier or more frequent alcohol or drug consumption.

Most people surveyed drank alcohol at low-risk levels (56.1%). Just over 26.5% drank at risky levels, 9.3% at high-risk levels and 8% abstained. Most respondents had never used any illicit drug (49.5%), or had not used within the past year (34.9%). A total of 7.3% used drugs yearly, 2.9% did so monthly, and 5.4% did so weekly.

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