27 April 2011 #Employment
UK employees take an average of 10 unscheduled days off work per year, a PricewaterhouseCoopers (PWC) report found. This is in comparison to 5.5 in USA.
Sick days account for 80% of unscheduled absences, with the remainder made up of jury service and compassionate leave. The majority of "sickies" were for minor illnesses like coughs, colds and the flu.
The cost on business is estimated at £32bn a year based on the average UK salary of £25,000, PWC said.
In the last three months of 2010 there were 633,000 absences due to sickness, resulting in 2m working days lost, the Office for National Statistics revealed. The recession saw the rate of "sickies" drop, however that rate was back to pre-recession levels by December 2010.
In February, the Government commissioned David Frost, the director general of the British Chambers of Commerce, to lead a review to lower the sickness absence bill in public and private sectors.