“I think I’ve got a touch of food poisoning…”
Today is apparently National Sickie Day, the day in the year which supposedly sees the highest number of employees phoning in sick.
However, an average of just over four days were lost to sickness per UK worker last year – the lowest since records began, official figures show. Sickness absence totalled 137 million working days last year, the equivalent of 4.3 days per worker, the Office for National Statistics (ONS) said. When records began in 1993, the equivalent of 7.2 days were lost.
TUC general secretary Frances O’Grady said: “It is a myth that UK workers are always throwing sickies. We are really a nation of mucus troopers, with people more likely to go to work when ill than stay at home when well”.
Minor illnesses such as coughs and colds accounted for a quarter of days lost last year and back and neck pain were high on the list of causes of sickness absence, as were mental health issues including stress, depression and anxiety.
Other findings for last year included:
- Employees took more time off than the self-employed, with a sickness rate of 2.1% compared with 1.4%
- The sickness rate was higher in the public sector (2.9%) than those working in private firms (1.7%)
- Smokers had a higher absence rate (2.5%) than those who had never smoked (1.6%)
Here at Default Blue, our average sickness levels are under 0.5% which is great but we do have our fair share of ‘mucus troopers’ which is not so good – especially with winter coughs and sneezes.
If your brand is looking a bit unwell please get in touch, we’re here to make brands healthier.