Increase in sickness absence
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Sickness absenceQ2 2008



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Increase in sickness absence

The sickness absence rate rose from 6.5 to 6.8 per cent from the second quarter of 2007 to the second quarter of 2008. The fact that Easter fell in the first quarter this year and in the second quarter last year means that in practice the sickness absence rose by a further 0.1 percentage points.

The sickness absence in the second quarter of 2008 was 1.7 per cent lower than in the second quarter of 2001, the year of the implementation of the agreement on an inclusive labour market.

In the rest of this article, the figures are not corrected for the Easter effect.

The self-certified sickness absence was 0.8 per cent while the doctor-certified sickness absence was 6.0 per cent. The rise in sickness absence was mainly a result of a rise in the doctor-certified absence.

The sickness absence rose by 3.5 per cent for men and 6 per cent for women, resulting in a total increase of 4.9 per cent from the second quarter of 2007 to the second quarter of 2008

Sickness absence man-days for employees, self-certified and certified by a doctor. As a percentage of scheduled man-days (sickness absence rate). Quarterly figures. 2000-2008

Increase in all industries

All industries faced rising sickness absence in this period. Public administration had the strongest increase with 7.5 per cent, followed by manufacturing and mining with 6.3 per cent. Real estate, and business activities had the lowest increase with 1.1 per cent.

Due to lack of registrations in the Employee Register, the increase in sickness absence in the oil and gas extraction industry is too large from 2007 to 2008.

Decreasing proportion of long-lasting absence

The proportion of sickness absence certified by a doctor lasting more than 31 days fell from 63.5 per cent to 62.8 per cent from the second quarter of 2007 to the second quarter of 2008.

Rise in all sectors

The sickness absence increased in both the private and public sector. Local government had the strongest increase with 6.1 per cent. In comparison, the rise in the private sector and central government including the health enterprises was 4.8 per cent and 3.4 per cent respectively.

Within local government, public administration had the strongest increase in sickness absence with 8 per cent. Among the largest industries in the private sector, the manufacturing and mining industry and domestic trade, hotels and restaurants industry had the strongest rise with 6.3 and 5 per cent respectively.

In central government, public administration had the strongest increase in sickness absence with 8 per cent. The sickness absence in health care (mainly health enterprises) rose by 4.9 per cent, the same as the country average.

Strongest increase among the youngest

Within the largest age groups, the group aged 25-29 years had the strongest rise in doctor-certified sickness absence with 7.7 per cent. In the age group 35-39 years the increase was 6.3 per cent. The strongest increase for women was found in the age group 20-24 years with 11.3 per cent while the strongest increase for men was found in the age group 25-29 years with 5.8 per cent.

These results are based on data on sickness absence certified by a doctor. The survey on self-certified sickness absence does not contain data on sickness absence by age.

Technical information

Sickness absence rate and the Easter effect

The sickness absence rate measures man-days lost due to own sickness as a percentage of scheduled man-days. Scheduled man-days are adjusted for vacation, which means that the figures are affected by Easter. The quarter in which Easter falls has a lower number of scheduled man-days, thus resulting in a higher sickness absence rate.

Rates of change

The sickness absence rates are presented using one decimal point. When we calculate the rates of change, we use a higher number of decimals. These rates of change will therefore differ somewhat from the rates of change produced when using the published rounded figures.

The statistics do not cover self - employed persons .



Published tables