18 May, 2012

Latest ONS figures

Legal & General have this morning commented on the latest ONS figures showing that 131 million days were lost to sickness absence in the UK last year.

The report found that:

  • There has been a fall in working days lost because of absence of around 26{6060b2de664e4eaa3e7b7e86961ce2c4bbd7a29b6c1097abf8257a4e5b07383e} since 1993 when 178 million days were lost.
  • In 1993 the average number of working days lost per worker was 7.2 days. Last year it was 4.5 days.
  • In 2011 the greatest number of days (34.4 million) were lost due to musculoskeletal problems. 27.5 million were lost due to minor illnesses, 13.1 million for stress, depression and anxiety and 13.7 million days for other reasons.

Commenting on the report Diane Buckley, Managing Director of Legal & General Group Protection said:

“It is encouraging that the number of working days lost due to sickness is decreasing. A big part of that will be employers taking action early to ensure that the right support is there to help their employees back to work”.

“As experts in sickness absence we know that early intervention with the appropriate treatment makes a very significant difference. The longer someone is off work, the more difficult it is for them to return and our recent claim figures have shown that employers who intervene early in an absence are more likely to see their employees return to work sooner than if they don’t.”

Legal & General recently released Group Income Protection claim figures showing that in the last full year seven out of ten people who were unable to work due to stress returned to work before the end of the deferred period. This figure represents a huge improvement, as fewer than four out of ten were able to return to work within the same period five years ago.

Legal & General’s Group Income Protection, Workplace Recovery, has been very successful at reducing absence, partly due to its specialist early intervention. Where appropriate, Workplace Recovery offers up to 24 sessions of vocationally based cognitive behavioural therapy (CBT) from CBT Services Limited, which explains our success in returning seven out of ten stress claimants back to work.

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