Chronic Disease

Work Productivity

Economic stability and prosperity depend on healthy workforces. As chronic disease rates continue to rise across Europe, with an estimated 25% of Europeans suffering from at least one chronic condition, making sure people can remain active and productive will become a top priority for policymakers and healthcare systems. Currently, 10% of workers leave jobs for health reasons and the level of unemployment for patients with chronic diseases is twice as high as those without. As a result, disease-related absenteeism costs the EU an estimated 2% of GDP annually, or over €240 billion, with those numbers likely to grow in tandem with the rates of chronic disease. Those who help care for chronically-ill family members may also experience loss of work productivity. From using vacation days to care for family members to being forced to shift to part-time work or retire early, issues of work productivity linked to chronic disease are vast and serious. Restructuring our health systems to prevent and better manage chronic diseases will be a necessary step to protecting and boosting European economies.

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