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Eurofound's EU PolicyWatch collates information on the responses of government and social partners to the COVID-19 crisis, the war in Ukraine, rising inflation, as well as gathering examples of company practices aimed at mitigating the social and economic impacts.

Factsheet for measure DK-2020-21/958 Updated – measures in Denmark

Support for people at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 virus

Forsørgelse til mennesker med ekstra risiko ved corona-sygdom

Country Denmark , applies nationwide
Time period Temporary, 20 May 2020 – 30 June 2021
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Income protection beyond short-time work
– Paid sick leave
Author Carsten Jørgensen (FAOS, University of Copenhagen), Anders Randrup (Oxford Research)
Measure added 10 July 2020 (updated 11 May 2021)

Background information

In May, the Danish Parliament agreed on a solution in the sickness benefit system, so that people in the special risk group for COVID-19 and their relatives are guaranteed support if they stay home during the reopening of Denmark.

The Parliament has allocated a reserve of DKK 200 million to the scheme.

The scheme came into force in May 20, and will apply until September 1.

Content of measure

The scheme is based on the National Board of Health's list of diseases and conditions that may lead to an increased risk of an elongated or serious course of illness in the case of COVID-19 infection, and the National Board of Health's recommendations for relatives of persons in the risk group. It is the individual's doctor who must specifically assess whether the employee is in the risk group or is related to a person in the risk group.

Persons in the special risk group and relatives may, in agreement with the employer, stay away from work during the reopening of Denmark and receive wages during the absence period or sickness benefit if the employer does not pay wages. The premise is that there are no opportunities to work from home or be relocated so that you are not exposed to the risk of infection.

Private and public employers who pay salaries to employees at risk or relatives while at home are entitled to sickness benefit reimbursement from the first day of absence.


The following updates to this measure have been made after it came into effect.

23 March 2021

The measure is extended until 30 June 2021.

22 December 2020

The measure is extended until 31 March 2021.

26 August 2020

The Government and parties have agreed to extend the measure until 31 December 2020.

Use of measure


Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
The COVID-19 risk group at the workplace
Applies to all businesses The COVID-19 risk group

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
National funds

Social partners

Social partners' role in designing the measure and form of involvement:

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role No involvement No involvement
Form Not applicable Not applicable

Social partners' role in the implementation, monitoring and assessment phase:

  • No involvement
  • Main level of involvement: N/A


No involvement.

Views and reactions

There were no particular reactions to the measure from the social partners.


  • 10 July 2020: The Parliament Agreement on support for people who are at higher risk for severe illness (
  • 26 August 2020: Aftale om forlængelse af ordning for lønmodtagere i øget risiko ved smitte med covid-19 og pårørende til personer i øget risiko (
  • 22 December 2020: L 123 Draft law amending sickness benefit and maternity law (
  • 23 March 2021: Majority extends sickness benefit schemes for corona sufferers and ensures maternity leave for self-employed with closed companies (
  • 23 March 2021: L 192 Draft law amending the Law on Sickness Benefits and the Maternity Act. (


Eurofound (2020), Support for people at higher risk of severe illness from COVID-19 virus, measure DK-2020-21/958 (measures in Denmark), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin,


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Disclaimer: This information has not been subject to the full Eurofound evaluation, editorial and publication process.