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Do You “Call In” Or “Call Out” Sick?

It’s been an awful year for the flu, worse than ever.  Everywhere you turn, someone is sick, whether it’s a family member, a friend, a co-worker or all of the above, the flu was and still is,  fierce this winter!  Most of the time if it’s just a cough or a minor cold, we suck it up and go to work.  But sometimes getting out of bed is next to impossible (those body aches are the worst), and heading into work is just not going to happen.  Plus if you’re sick, trust me, your co-workers don’t want you coming in and putting them at risk of getting sick too!  So what do you do?  When you let your boss know you won’t be coming in, do you call it “calling IN sick” or “calling OUT sick”?  I’ve heard both, I’ve said both, so which one is correct?

Well, according to a recent study, the majority of us, 84%, say we are ‘calling IN sick’, but 1 in 7 people say they are ‘calling OUT sick’.  By the way, the latter is most popular in Ohio and western Pennsylvania.  I always said ‘calling in’ myself, until I heard so many people say ‘calling out’, that I questioned if I was saying it wrong.  So just to be on the safe side, I now say both phrases, whichever one comes to mind first…though I do think ‘calling in’ sick makes more sense.  You are after all, putting the call in to let someone know that you will not be coming to work.  I can see how the other phrase works too though, because if you are at work and you happen to ask where someone is, what’s the response?  “Susie is OUT sick.”  You wouldn’t say “Susie is IN sick.”  I can see how either one works, so I guess it’s just a matter of preference.  Hey, as long as you let your employer know that you’re not working if you have the flu, I think you’re in the clear and your co-workers will thank you for not spreading your germs!

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