Workers in Germany took record amount of sick leave in first half of 2022
Employees in Germany took more days of sick leave in the first half of 2022 than ever before, according to new figures from Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), a statutory health insurance company.
Record number of sick notes in Germany in first half of 2022
Figures on the 5,5 million workers in Germany insured by TK show that they were absent due to sickness for an average of 9,1 days in the first six months of 2022, a new record. During the same period in 2021, it was 6,8 days, and in 2020 - the early days of the coronavirus pandemic - it was 7,9 days.
“The number of sick notes had already risen significantly in the first quarter of this year,” Dr Jens Baas, chief executive at TK, told DW. “After falling again in April and May, there was another marked increase in June.”
COVID only makes up small proportion of sick leave reasons
The figures show the main cause of people taking time off sick is still respiratory diseases like colds and flus, according to TK. COVID now only accounts for a small proportion of absences, at just 3,34 percent - but it is of course possible that people are calling in sick with cold- or flu-like symptoms, and not realising they actually have COVID.
At the same time, the number of days taken off due to coronavirus has risen since last year. TK reported that employees with COVID took an average of 0,32 days off in the first six months of 2022, compared to 0,08 days in 2021 and 0,02 in 2020.
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