Omicron pushing sick leave: Absenteeism up to 50% higher than pre-Covid
A combination of Omicron, the flu, and work-from-home has sick leave in the Netherlands "exceptionally high." Occupational health and safety services report increases in absenteeism of 30 to over 50 percent, AD reports.
The Arbo Unie, which provides occupational health and safety services for over 10,000 companies with more than 200 employees each, saw the number of sick reports skyrocket in the first weeks of 2022. It recorded 30 percent more sick days than in the same period in 2020 before the pandemic reached the Netherlands. Interpolis reported 54 percent more sick days last month than in a typical December.
Occupational health and safety services ArboNed and HumanCapitalCare also report that absenteeism was 'exceptionally high" in December at 4.9 percent, though a fraction lower than in November. They attribute the decrease to the holiday and the lockdown. According to HumanCapitalCare, Omicron was responsible for 35 percent of sick days and the flu for about 25 percent.
Absenteeism was highest in healthcare (6.7 percent), industry (5.6 percent), education (5.5 percent), and construction (5.1 percent) - all sectors where employees work on locations. Sick leave was much lower among people who worked from home.