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Publication, Part of

NHS Sickness Absence Rates May 2020, Provisional Statistics

Official statistics

Current Chapter

NHS Sickness Absence Rates May 2020, Provisional Statistics


Summary

NHS Sickness Absence Rates May 2020, Provisional Statistics


Key Facts

Tables 1-4 (Monthly Sickness Absence Rates by NHS England region, Staff Group, Organisation Type and Organisation) from the quarterly Sickness Absence reports are published on a monthly basis on the same day as the Monthly workforce publication. This is to enable the data in these publications to be available on a more frequent and timely basis.

NHS Absence rates in May 2020

The overall sickness absence rate for England was 4.7%. This is down from 6.2% in April 2020 and slightly higher than May 2019 (4.0%)

Regional and organisational type variation

The North West region reported the highest sickness absence rate at 5.6%.  London reported the highest sickness absence rate in April 2020 (7.2%). The South West remained unchanged as the region reporting the lowest sickness absence rate at 3.8% down from 4.5% in April 2020.   Ambulance Trusts had the highest sickness absence rate at 5.3%, down from 7.3% in April 2020. Clinical Commissioning Groups had the lowest sickness absence rate at 1.8%.

Staff group differences

Support to doctors, nurses & midwives reported the highest sickness absence rate at 6.7%, down from 8.5% in April 2020. Support to ambulance staff had the highest rate in April 2020 at 8.6%. Hospital Practitioner / Clinical Assistant the lowest rate at 0.1%, also down from 0.9% in April 2020

Reason for sickness absence

Anxiety/stress/depression/other psychiatric illnesses is consistently the most reported reason for sickness absence, accounting for 510,281 full time equivalent days lost and 28.3% of all sickness absence in May 2020. This is up from 20.9% in April 2020

COVID-19 related sickness absence

340,900 full time equivalent days (from a total of 1,800,000 lost FTE days) were lost due to COVID-19 related sickness absence in May 2020, equating to 18.9% of all absences recorded. This is compared to 30.6% in April 2020 and 15.9% in March 2020.   With the exception of Staff Grade, all staff groups reported an increase in COVID-19 related sickness absence between March 2020 and April 2020.   During the March to May 2020 period, overall sickness absence rates peaked nationally at 6.2% in April. However, the equivalent rate for COVID-19 reported absences was 1.9%.   London region reported the highest COVID-19 related sickness absences as a proportion of all FTE days lost through absence in both March (26.0%) and April (40.0%). In May, the highest COVID-19 related sickness absence was reported by the South East (25.8%).

Please see COVID-19 related absence file in the Resources section below for further information on COVID-19 reported absence




Last edited: 23 June 2021 3:24 pm