In all the national newspapers today, Dr.Steve Boorman´s report that NHS Staff aren´t terrible healthy:
More than 45,000 NHS staff members a day report sick, according to the first national audit of working patterns within the health service.
The sickness rate is one-and-a-half times that of the private sector in general, while NHS workers were also found to have high average levels of obesity, smoking and poor mental health, affecting patient care.
Interestingly, the only comparative data here is that NHS staff take 50% more sick days per year than private sector employees. Strikes me as an odd comparison for a physician to make. A more controlled comparison would surely be with other public sector staff, with similar employees and entitlement to sick leave.
Couldn´t most of the difference be accounted for by a different management culture in the private sector, increased pressure on staff to have high attendance records, more stringent rules on when you can take days off and expect to be paid?
I know from my experience that I´ve struggled into work when unfit for private employees, when with a more generous boss I would have preferred to rest and get better.