The cost associated with sickness absence is highly reported and well known. In the NHS Health and Wellbeing Review 2009 Steve Boorman stated that: ‘Reducing current levels of sickness absence across the NHS by a third…would result in a gain of 3.4 million days a year, equivalent to 14,900 extra whole-time equivalent (WTE) staff and an annual direct cost saving of £555 million’.
The management of sickness absence should form part of an organisation’s overall health and wellbeing strategy. A robust strategy should focus on prevention, as well as interventions and proactive and reactive measures.
A successful health and wellbeing programme requires engagement, time and commitment. The programme should be measured using a range of indicators including, but not solely focused on sickness absence.
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