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Author: Your job is killing you

It isn't just that your boss is demanding and that the hours at your Charlotte job are long and hard. It isn't just that you are expected to do a lot for the company while getting little in return. It isn't just that you have little control over what you do at work or how you do it. It's all of that and more.

Your job is killing you, says a Stanford professor in his newly released book. He writes that workplace stress is killing workers and driving health care costs higher and higher.

"It's pretty clear that the human costs -- in terms of death -- and the economic costs, in terms of elevated health care spend, are quite substantial," author Jeffrey Pfeffer said. He adds an astounding claim: the workplace is now the fifth leading cause of death in the nation.

His book, "Dying for a Paycheck," contends that more than 120,000 deaths per year and up to 8 percent (about $190 billion) of annual health care costs are attributable to the mismanagement of the American workforce.

Pfeffer argues that recent workplace fitness trends -- yoga classes and wellness programs -- should be replaced with a focus on improving management practices that lead to job insecurity, layoffs, long hours and poisonous work cultures.

While there is nothing inherently wrong with a fitness class at work, he says the focus should be on improving management so that people feel secure and safe and so that they don't need to pull long hours to hang on to their positions.

Those who cannot work due to chronic conditions such as depression or anxiety can file for Social Security Disability benefits. If the claim is denied, they can speak with an attorney experienced in fighting for those needed benefits in appeals.

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