< Future changes in employment law
11.07.2012 10:16 Age: 316 days
Fall in absence levels
The Office for National Statistics (ONS) reports that a total of 131 million days were lost in 2011 due to sickness absence. A few more statistics from the report:
- On average, 4.5 days are lost per person.
- The most common reasons given for sickness absence were minor illness such as coughs, colds and flu, which accounted for around 27.5 million days.
- Musculo-skeletal problems accounted for the greatest number of days lost - 34.4 million days and more than a quarter of sickness absence.
- 13.1 million days were lost due to stress, depression and anxiety.
- Women had more sickness absence than men - men lost around 2.5% of their working hours, women lost 2.3%.
- Sickness absence tended to increase with age - around 1.5% of working hours were lost from workers aged between 16 and 34, compared with around 2.5% for workers aged 50 to 64. Workers aged 65 and over had lower sickness - the ONS said that this was because those with health problems were more likely to have retired.
- Absence rates were lower in the private than the public sector (1.6% and 2.6% respectively).
- Geographically, workers in London had the lowest absence rates, with the highest percentage in the North East and Wales.