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Stock photo: Covid masks

The cost to employers for workers who are absent due to Covid-19 is estimated to have totaled more than $78.4 billion over the past 22 months, according to a new analysis from the Integrated Benefits Institute (IBI) that seeks to quantify the pandemic’s broader productivity impacts. That works out to average weekly losses approaching $1 billion per week.

IBI, a national nonprofit research organization, included in its assessment potential sick leave wages, short-term disability payments, and spending on employee benefits. Here is how its estimate of $78.4 billion breaks down:


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