Small decrease in seasonally-adjusted sickness absence
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Sickness absenceQ3 2013



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Small decrease in seasonally-adjusted sickness absence

Sickness absence adjusted for seasonal and influenza variations was 6.3 per cent in the 3rd quarter of 2013 – a decrease of 3 per cent from the 2nd quarter of 2013.

Sickness absence man-days for employees 16-69 years in per cent of contractual man-days, by type of absence and sex. Seasonal- and influenza adjusted1
3rd quarter 2013Per cent from previous quarter
1The sickness absence rates are shown to two decimal points. In other tables the rates are shown with one decimal point. More decimal points are used when calculating the rates of change in order to get more accurate figures. These will therefore differ slightly from the rates of change produced when using the published rounded figures.
Both sexes
Self-certified and certified by doctor6.33-3.0
Certified by doctor5.36-1.6
Self-certified and certified by doctor4.90-2.7
Certified by doctor4.05-2.0
Self-certified and certified by doctor8.13-3.1
Certified by doctor7.01-1.2

The self-certified sickness absence decreased by 9.8 per cent, while the doctor-certified absence decreased by 1.6 per cent. Sickness absence decreased for both women and men – by 3.1 and 2.7 per cent respectively.

The fall in sickness absence in the last quarter is in line with the figures from the two previous publications, which also showed a fall in sickness absence.

Since the 2nd quarter of 2001, when the agreement on an inclusive labour market was implemented, the seasonal and influenza-adjusted sickness absence has dropped by 12.3 per cent.

Statistics without seasonal and influenza adjustment

Since the following comments are based on data that is not adjusted for seasonal and influenza variations, we look at changes over the past year, from the 3rd quarter of 2012 to the 3rd quarter of 2013. Sickness absence that is not adjusted for seasonal and influenza variations was 6.2 per cent in the 3rd quarter of 2013; about the same level as the 3rd quarter of 2012.

Sickness absence almost unchanged in both genders

Sickness absence among men remained unchanged at 4.9 per cent, while sickness absence among women decreased from 8 to 7.9 per cent.

Small decrease in local government

Sickness absence in local government decreased by 3.9 per cent, while absence in public administration (including health enterprises) rose by 1.9 cent. Sickness absence in the private sector remained mainly unchanged.

Decrease in most of the industries

Among the largest industries, sickness absence decreased in education together with information and communication, by 5.3 and 4 per cent respectively. Absence in public administration decreased by 3.6 per cent. Most of the other major industries saw only minor changes, with a few showing an increase – the largest of which was in transportation and storage by 6.1 per cent.

Strongest decrease among the youngest age groups

Doctor-certified sickness absence decreased in all of the major age groups. Persons aged 20-24 and 25-29 years had the strongest decrease, of 4.3 and 3.1 per cent respectively.

Among women, the sickness absence declined in all of the major age groups, except one: the age group 35-39 years had a minor increase of 0.6 per cent. The age group 20-24 years had the strongest decrease of 4.4 per cent.

The doctor-certified sickness absence for men declined in all of the major age groups. The age group 20-24 years had the strongest decline of 3.8 per cent, while the age group 30-34 years had the smallest decrease of 0.5 per cent.

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