Why 14 million people likely will call in sick Monday

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Credit: DaytonDailyNews

If you don't plan on being at work Monday after the Super Bowl, you might want to think of a better excuse than having a bad cough. About 14 million others might be using the same excuse.

A survey released Wednesday by the Workforce Institute at Kronos and Mucinex details an estimated 13.9 million Americans will call in sick Monday after Super Bowl LII, making it one of the biggest sick days of the year.

The Monday after the Super Bowl has been notoriously known as a day where people call out of work. Last year, 16.5 million Americans said they planned to call in sick because of the game, according to a study done last year by the same companies.

"We've been researching the Big Game's effect on the workforce for more than a decade and while numbers may fluctuate each year, one clear fact remains: #SuperSickMonday is often the biggest day in America for calling out of work," said Joyce Maroney, executive director of the Workforce Institute at Kronos Inc.

The numbers could go up, too, because of a harsh flu season this year.

Cases of influenza have risen sharply across the nation, according to the Centers for Disease Control. This year is on track to be as bad the 2014-15 outbreak that caused an estimated 56,000 deaths, federal health officials said.

"There's been a bad flu strain this year and it may have an impact on people calling out on Monday, but we don't anticipate it playing a major role in changing the stats," said Brian Dolan, Equity Lead for U.S. Health at RB, which owns Mucinex.

He said what coast you live on could play a small role due to differing time zones, but most people will still be up late with the post-game show and parties.

The survey, which was given to more than 2,000 people, also found that 25 percent feel the day after the Big Game should be considered a holiday.

For years, people have rallied around the idea. Last year, Heinz even started a petition to take the matter to Congress. The company also gave its employees the day off, citing that even if employees do come into work, productivity drops significantly.

Even human resource managers — a whopping 72 percent — agree the day should be designated a holiday.

Over the years, 1 in 5 Americans said they have called in sick the Monday after the Super Bowl, according to the survey.

About 26 percent of employees calling in sick post-Super Bowl tell their employers they have a fever. Fourteen percent said a sore throat and 12 percent said headache.

So if you do call in sick, be a bit more creative.

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