A doctor’s note is going viral online as the MD involved points a finger at the work requirement that calls for a sick note for employees.
In the note, which was posted to Reddit, the anonymous doctor slams Pizza Hut Canada’s requirement that an employee who called in sick must provide a doctor’s note as proof of his illness.
The employee has “a cold today and sensibly stayed home from work rather than spreading this to his colleagues/customers,” the note says. “I have no test for the common cold and therefore believe him/her, however you feel his time and mine should be wasted by making him sit in the walk in clinic for hours.”
A copy of a Pizza Hut employment manual from 2011 states that employees may be required to provide a doctor’s note to verify their illness when taking sick leave. The manual also states that employees can earn up to three paid sick days annually.
Since the business requires it, shouldn’t the business pay for the taxpayer-funded medical service? Certainly, when my employer requires that I incur an expense on their behalf, my employer reimburses me.
This doesn’t really address the nub of the problem. The business is trying to prevent absenteeism, but unloading this cost of managing a workforce on the taxpayer – externalizing the expense, so to speak. Free market economics dictate that a business that cannot provide a product or a service profitably on a sustainable basis should not exist. Passing expenses onto the taxpayer would just be disguising a failure. Nervous Nellies who fear the loss of jobs should realize that propping up failures is counterproductive.
This is not to say that the companies who pursue these policies are failures, they are just trying to maximize their profit and passing on the windfall to their owners. It is up to regulators to recognize this amoral use of taxpayer funds and correct it.
I’m a family physician in Alberta and I wrote something similar for a patient with a viral infection that requested a note for their employer at the employer’s request. The nurse in the HR department of that company sent a letter to the College of Physicians and Surgeons of Alberta requesting an explanation of the content of my note. I had to send an apology to the College for the content of the note. I agree with the note this physician wrote.