Article

Estimating the cost of a smoking employee.

The Ohio State University, College of Public Health & Moritz College of Law, , Columbus, Ohio, USA.
Tobacco control (Impact Factor: 3.85). 06/2013; DOI: 10.1136/tobaccocontrol-2012-050888
Source: PubMed

ABSTRACT OBJECTIVE: We attempted to estimate the excess annual costs that a US private employer may attribute to employing an individual who smokes tobacco as compared to a non-smoking employee. DESIGN: Reviewing and synthesising previous literature estimating certain discrete costs associated with smoking employees, we developed a cost estimation approach that approximates the total of such costs for US employers. We examined absenteeism, presenteesim, smoking breaks, healthcare costs and pension benefits for smokers. RESULTS: Our best estimate of the annual excess cost to employ a smoker is $5816. This estimate should be taken as a general indicator of the extent of excess costs, not as a predictive point value. CONCLUSIONS: Employees who smoke impose significant excess costs on private employers. The results of this study may help inform employer decisions about tobacco-related policies.

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