Sickness absence remains high due to flu wave and corona: 11 sick reports per 100 workers in March

The flu wave has overtaken corona in terms of the number of sick reports. Sickness absence rose to new highs in March, but ultimately only 0.1 percentage point more than in February.

In March, the average absenteeism percentage rose further to 5.6 percent from 5.5 percent a month earlier, according to figures from the health and safety services ArboNed and HumanCapitalCare.

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It is striking that it is actually not the season for the flu at all. “We have pushed the wave ahead of us,” Jurriaan Penders, director of medical affairs at the occupational health and safety services, told NU.nl.

According to Penders, this is only a small flu wave, but absenteeism due to illness remains persistently high as a result of the addition. “From both the flu and corona and other causes to make you sick

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According to the organizations, in March there were 11 sick reports for every 100 workers. “In the course of March, the number of reports of absenteeism due to corona decreased, while the number of reports of flu and flu-like complaints increased,” the services state. In the last week of March, flu was the cause of 35 percent of absenteeism reports. Before corona this was 30 percent. The occupational health and safety services also note that the duration of absenteeism appears to be decreasing due to corona. In addition, they point out that, despite the record, the total number of reports from flu and corona is comparable to flu waves as in 2018. There, the average absenteeism percentage went from 6.5 percent in February to 6.7 percent last month.

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Jurriaan Penders notes that the culture around reporting sick has changed due to corona. People are now less likely to sit in the office with coughing fits and a runny nose, so they stay at home.

Author: Jobly