Colds responsible for high sick leave

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Colds drive sick leave upwards

The long winter last year left its mark on the health of Germans. In the first half of 2013, more sick days were registered than in 2012. Colds in particular were responsible for most days off.
According to the analysis of the data of 2.7 million employees insured with DAK health, mental illnesses have continued to increase. They now rank third in the most frequently diagnosed diagnoses. Overall, the sick leave rose from 3.8 to 4.0 percent. According to this, four out of 100 employees reported sick on every working day in the past year.

Common muscle and skeletal disorders
"The number of days off due to runny nose and cough rose by a quarter," the cash register said. Coughs, bronchitis and pneumonia were responsible for "17.3 percent of all days absent," according to statistics. This is an increase of around three percent compared to the previous year. In the past year, 50.6 percent of all employed insured persons had at least one sick leave. The most common cause was musculoskeletal disorders, such as back pain. However, complaints on the ligaments, tendons and nerves also caused problems for the employees. "The rise in sick leave is not dramatic," said DAK CEO Herbert Rebscher. "There have always been colds."

Reasons for the increase not always clear A reliable analysis of the reasons for the increased sick leave is usually difficult. Because in addition to the average age of the employees and the type of illness, many other factors usually play a decisive role. There could be significantly more sick employees. The German Trade Union Confederation (DGB) had previously determined that a number of employees go to work at least from time to time. The fear of losing your own job plays a crucial role. In 2011, IG-Metall stated in a message that, according to the health report of the Techniker Krankenkasse (TK), agency workers and temporary workers reported that they were unable to work more often than is the case with conventional employees. A lack of job insecurity and wages are the "most common cause of illnesses" in these employment relationships, according to the report. (fr)

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