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Data: 37.7 Million Workers at High Risk for COVID-19

This risk level presents serious challenges for employers

Outbreaks at businesses like food processing plants and nursing homes have put in stark relief the challenges essential workers face within their place of employment. As more workplaces move to resume in-person operations, those challenges will encompass more and more non-remote workers, exacerbating a serious public health threat as states across the country kickstart their economies, despite COVID-19 (coronavirus) surges.

The Kaiser Family Foundation (KFF) found more than 90 million adults are at higher risk for serious health outcomes from COVID-19 due to underlying health conditions or age. Almost 38 million of that cohort is employed — most of them full time — and likely face financial hardship preventing them from remaining absent from their job, if their employer wants them back.

"These data suggest employers should take into account the higher risk some workers will face, allowing them to work at home where possible, to be tested and to minimize their risks if they return to work," KFF President and CEO Drew Altman said in a statement.

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