New data from health insurance organizations in German-speaking Europe (Germany, Switzerland and Austria) point to a radical increase in workplace sick leave following the 2020 and 2022 Covid years.
The most recent statistics come from Germany, where health insurance company DAK-Gesundheit, with 5.5 million insured, notes that the first half of 2023 saw more sickness claims than in the entire previous ten years combined.
The elderly care sector was the hardest hit by the sick leave, with coughs, colds or other infectious diseases cited as the most common causes of sick leave.
In Switzerland, authorities report a 34% increase in sick leave in the country for 2022 – compared to the COVID-19 years 2020 and 2021.
In Austria, over 6 million people were on sick leave in 2022, compared to 3.9 and 4.5 million in 2020 and 2021 – an increase of 54% and 33%, respectively, compared to 2022.
The UK is also reported to have suffered record levels of sickness absence in 2022.
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