Absences due to illness are increasing sharply among employees in the municipal sector

Absences due to illness are increasing sharply among employees in the municipal sector

This is four days more than last year.

Although the study does not give specific reasons for sickness absences, the lead researcher Jenni Ervasti The Institute of Occupational Health suggests that the observed increase is probably due to absenteeism caused by the COVID-19 virus. This assumption is supported by Kela’s sickness benefit statistics, which show that sickness absences due to diseases caused by COVID-19 increased in 2022. However, sickness absences related to mental health problems, musculoskeletal diseases and respiratory diseases remained at the previous year’s level.

Among the various occupations in the municipal sector, the average sick leave days were the highest in 2022 in occupations related to health care. Early childhood educators, family daycare nurses, farm nurses, community nurses, nannies, school assistants and domestic helpers were absent from work. more than 25 days on average for their own illnesses. In contrast, managers, specialists, financial secretaries and communications officers had the lowest average sick leave days, ranging from 9 to 11 days.

In the relative increase in sick leave days compared to the previous year, park workers, domestic helpers, firefighters and security guards, training managers, facility nurses, nannies and early childhood educators increased the most.

Of the different age groups, people under the age of 30 got sick the most, but the differences between the age groups did not change significantly compared to the previous year.

Interestingly, the proportion of employees who did not take any sick leave during the year decreased in all municipal occupations in 2022. In previous years, due to the impact of the COVID-19 pandemic, remote work and reduced contact had increased the number of employees who remained sick. free. In 2022, however, only 16 percent of employees did not take a single sick day, compared to 29 percent in 2021.

The results highlight the impact of the ongoing COVID-19 situation on the sickness absences of employees in the municipal sector. Occupations with a lot of human interaction, such as health care, social work, early childhood education, teaching and emergency services, showed more likely workers to take sick leave, further supporting the link with COVID-19 absenteeism.

The general increase in sick leave in all occupational groups highlights the need for organizations to prioritize the health and well-being of employees. Employers should consider implementing measures to promote a healthy work environment, including adequate rest and recovery, access to health care services, and mental health support. In addition, ongoing efforts to contain the spread of infectious diseases, such as vaccination campaigns and effective workplace hygiene practices, can help minimize the impact on sickness absence.

For more detailed information on sickness absences in the municipal sector, including information on occupational groups and trends, you can find the updated results of the Kunta10 survey in the Employment Information Service of the Norwegian Institute of Public Health website.


Source: The Nordic Page

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