Sickness Rates Highest in the Public Sector

By Read, Julie | Public Finance, May 16, 2008 | Go to article overview

Sickness Rates Highest in the Public Sector


Read, Julie, Public Finance


The gap between sick days taken by public and private sector employees has grown to a record level, according to the annual CBI/Axa absence survey.

The average among public sector workers was nine days off in 2007, compared with 5.8 days in the private sector. According to the survey, published on May 14, the private sector improved its performance on absence last year, but the public sector remained at the same level.

Although the total number of days lost fell slightly, the absences still cost the economy £13.2bn in lost output, the survey estimated. Workers took an average of 6.7 days off sick each during 2007, down from seven days the year before.

The survey found that in the public sector the highest average absence rates were in health and social care services (12.6 days) and police and probation services (9. …

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