Studies that show American businesses lose 2.8 million working days a year due to illness have prompted managed first aid service providers to suggest ways to cut the overall costs by ensuring employers act proactively to control sickness at work.

First aid firms say companies should take action to help treat sick staff members who turn up for work because they fear their wages might be docked as well as any employees who become ill during the working day.

They say that by offering first aid supplies such as aspirin, decongestants and even disposable face masks, a stocked first-aid cabinet will help limit the spread of symptoms to the firms’ healthy employees.