The anatomy of absenteeism

Publisert i

Journal of Health Economics 30 (2), 2011, pages 227-292


Based on comprehensive administrative register data from Norway, we examine the determinants of sickness absence behavior; in terms of employee characteristics, workplace characteristics, panel doctor characteristics, and economic conditions. The analysis is based on a novel concept of a worker's steady state sickness absence propensity, computed from a multivariate hazard rate model designed to predict the incidence and duration of sickness absence for all workers. Key conclusions are that (i) most of the cross-sectional variation in absenteeism is caused by genuine employee heterogeneity; (ii) the identity of a person's panel doctor has a significant impact on absence propensity; (iii) sickness absence insurance is frequently certified for reasons other than sickness; and (iv) the recovery rate rises enormously just prior to the exhaustion of sickness insurance benefits.


By Simen Markussen, Knut Røed, Ole J. Røgeberg and Simen Gaure
Published Sep. 9, 2011 3:10 PM - Last modified Sep. 9, 2011 3:15 PM