How to Monitor and Address Absenteeism in District Hospitals




Bamford L


Health Systems Trust

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Many health service managers are familiar with the problem of absenteeism in district hospitals. It affects the running of the hospital and can seriously compromise the quality of care which patients receive. For the purpose of this Kwik-Skwiz absenteeism is defined as staff taking time off that has not been scheduled or staff taking more leave than is necessary or reasonable. Clearly there are many legitimate reasons for taking sick or other types of leave. It is often debatable how much leave is reasonable. It often depends on the pattern and circumstances, rather than the actual total amount of leave that an individual takes. Managers have a responsibility to balance the rights and needs of individual staff members, with the needs of the hospital. High levels of absenteeism, both on the part of individuals or in the whole hospital, are often symptomatic of underlying problems. Addressing these issues can result in lower absenteeism levels that benefits staff, managers and patients. [author’s description]


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