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Two-thirds of HR professionals say opioids affect workplace

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Sixty-seven percent of human resources professionals surveyed say their companies are impacted by opioid use today or will be in the future and 64% say they are unprepared to handle opioid addiction, according to survey results released Tuesday by The Hartford Financial Services Group Inc.

The Hartford, Connecticut-based insurer surveyed 2,000 U.S. workers and 500 human resources executives for The Hartford’s Opioids in the Workplace Survey.

The survey also found that 76% of workers do not feel trained to help their colleagues navigate addiction.

The survey also uncovered a “knowledge gap:” 24% of HR professionals and 18% of workers feel confident they could spot an addict; 19% of both HR professionals and workers reported being “extremely knowledgeable or very knowledgeable about ways to reduce opioid addiction,” according to the results. Meanwhile, the results showed that 34% of workers said they feel their company has the resources to help opioid-addicted workers.

As for ways companies address addiction, 31% of HR professionals and 46% of employees say a worker is fired when an addiction is uncovered and 37% of HR professionals and 22% of employees say that employee would instead be “closely monitored.”

As for treatment, 45% of HR professionals and 31% of workers said an employee returns after treatment, according to the results.

The survey coincided with the announcement of the insurer’s new partnership with the New York-based addiction prevention nonprofit Shatterproof. The insurer has reduced the use of opioids among the injured workers it insures by 44% since 2015, according to a statement.