32% prefer employees to stay at home when ill

Sickness absenceAlmost a third (32%) of manager respondents prefer staff to take time off sick rather than come to work when ill, according to research by Axa PPP Healthcare.

Its survey of 1,000 employers also found that 38% of respondents believe providing all employees with access to healthcare benefits helps to reduce sickness absence and improve employee health.

The survey also found:

  • 29% of respondents are frustrated by the working time lost when employees take time off for medical appointments.
  • Almost one in 10 (8%) ask employees to take half a day’s holiday to cover the time they take for medical appointments, and 12% ensure employees make up for missed time during working hours.
  • Nearly half (49%) of respondents agree that having a quick diagnosis and information about how to get better would help improve their employees’ productivity.
  • 28% of respondents believe sick employees should take however long is needed for their treatment and recuperation.
  • 17% of respondents say that, although they are sympathetic to employees’ plight, they do not expect them to take more than three days off sick at a time.
  • 35% of manager respondents delay seeking treatment for their own health condition because of work hours and pressures.

Chris Horlick, distribution director at Axa PPP Healthcare, said: “Time away from work due to sickness absence and medical appointments can be frustrating- both for employees and for employers.

“Seven out of ten of the bosses we surveyed agreed that providing healthcare benefits across the workforce can help reduce sickness absence, improve health and aid employee retention yet, in our experience, employers tend to provide medical insurance to senior managers only.”