A few of my employees recently hurt their backs on the job and are collecting workers' comp. Should I expect that they'll come back to work?

It may depend on how old they are. A recent study followed people of all ages who had work-related back injuries. Everyone in the study had the same treatment of physical exercise and counseling. One year later, all of the younger patients (under 25) had gone back to work whereas only 69 percent of the older patients (age 55 and up) had returned to work. Notably, the older workers were six times more likely to return to their original jobs. Younger workers more often switched jobs or employers or both.

These results suggest that older employees are less likely to return to work overall. But when they do, they often go back to their original job.

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