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Hospital Employees Are Sick, Pay More For Health Insurance

Do you know that hospital employees pay more for health insurance than employees in other industries and also tend to be in worse health?

It's true, if you believe the results of a new study from Thomson Reuters that examined the general health and health care benefits of more than one million hospital workers and their dependents and then compared these findings to employees (and their dependents) in the general U.S. workforce.

Thomson Reuters' diagnosis? Hospital employees have a 8.6% higher "illness burden" than other employees. In fact, people who work in U.S. hospitals are more likely to have HIV, mental illness, asthma, diabetes, congestive heart failure and hypertension. Hospital workers and their dependents, however, tend to avoid doctor's appointments, and more than one-fifth (22%) go to the emergency room for treatment.

Hospital employees spend 10% more for their health coverage, too. The annual health care costs of hospital employees and their dependents averages around $4,662, which is roughly $538 more than employees in other sectors pay annually.

So hospital employees, who spend their work time around sick people and hold some of America's most biohazardous jobs, are a little bit sick themselves. But they're paying more than other workers for medical care while getting less in return. Hmm. Something is wrong here. Can't hospital workers get a nice employee discount or something? It seems like they deserve one.

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