Isle Of Man / Ellan Vannin

Sickness leave levels 'dropping' in Manx government

Public sector working days lost through sickness absence in the Isle of Man have fallen by 12%, according to government statistics.

The official figures show the average days taken off by each employee dropped from 5.03 in 2012, to 4.43 in 2013.

Between 2007 and 2011, public sector sick pay cost Isle of Man taxpayers in the region of £48m.

It is thought that stress, depression, operations and musculoskeletal problems account for about 50% of sick leave.

A government spokesman said the recent fall in sick leave levels "represents an overall cost saving of almost £1m."

But Chief Minister Allan Bell said there was still room for improvement.

"The vast majority of our staff are extremely conscientious and most cases of absence are genuine," he said.

"At a time of intense financial pressure, it is essential that we get our own house in order and ensure that government is running as efficiently as possible - this includes further reducing the cost of working days lost through staff sickness absence."

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