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Factsheet for measure SK-2020-13/386 Updated – measures in Slovakia

Introduction of the pandemic sickness benefit

Zavedenie pandemického nemocenského

Country Slovakia , applies nationwide
Time period Open ended, started on 27 March 2020
Context COVID-19
Type Legislations or other statutory regulations
Category Income protection beyond short-time work
– Paid sick leave
Author Daniela Keselova (IVPR) and Eurofound
Measure added 08 April 2020 (updated 07 February 2022)

Background information

A special sickness benefit for persons in obligatory quarantine due to the COVID-19 was introduced by amendment of the Act No. 461/2003 Coll. on Social insurance. The purpose of this measure is to help persons to overcome their lower income during quarantine. A further goal is to contain the costs for employers which might have to pay wage compensation to the employees on a sick leave for not quarantine-related reasons.

Content of measure

In case of obligatory quarantine, the benefit is paid by the Social Insurance Agency from the first day of quarantine at the level of 55% of gross wage (approx. 70% of net wage).

The person with diagnosed COVID-19 contacts his or her physician by phone or email. The physician sends the form to the Social Insurance Agency. The sick person also must inform his or her employer about the quarantine. There have been differences from the regular sickness benefit applied in other reasons than COVID-19. In these other cases, the first ten days of sick leave are paid by the employer as a wage compensation (25% of gross wage during first three days and 55% of gross wage from the fourth to the 10th day). The sickness benefit is paid by the Social Insurance Agency from the 11th day of the sickness (55% of gross wage).

Not all persons in obligatory quarantine with COVID-19 are eligible for this benefit. They have to have paid sickness benefit insurance at least 270 days in the course of two years before the sickness - same as in other cases.

Updates

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

01 December 2021

As of 1 December 2021 the pandemic sickness benefit ended. The persons in the obligatory quarantine due to COVID-19 receive the regular sickness benefit. The conditions are the same as the conditions of sickness benefit due to other illness. Only the process of application differs. To apply for the sickness benefit due to COVID-19 quarantine the general practitioner sends confirmation to the Social Insurance Agency. The person in COVID-19 quarantine sends to the Social Insurance Agency the application for the sickness benefit in an electronic form. The Social Insurance Agency pairs the GP's confirmation with the person's application to make a decision about the sickness benefit payments. Moreover, the person in quarantine announces the employer his/her quarantine.

Use of measure

In March 2020 the number of sickness benefits applications due to quarantine (all illnesses which required quarantine) reached its peak of 39,413 cases. The exact number of quarantine sickness benefits applications due to COVID-19 is not available. It is assumed that the vast majority of these applications refers, anyway, to COVID-19 quarantine as there were only 10 quarantine sickness benefits in March 2019. Between April and June 2020 the number of quarantine sickness benefits applications decreased steeply compared to its March 2020 numbers (to 1,818 in June 2020).

During summer 2020 the number of quarantine sickness benefits application increased slightly but stayed far from March 2020 numbers. There were 2,479 quarantine sickness benefits in July 2020 and 4,243 in August 2020.

Due to the worsening of the epidemiological situation the number of new applications increased in autumn (63,028 in October and 67,450 in November) and in winter 2020 (92,100 in December 2020) and overcame the peak from March 2020. The increase of new applicants continued in January 2021 with 93,711 and 97,060 in February 2021 followed by steep decrease in next three months. There were only 9,497 new applicants in May 2021.

According to the Institute of Social Policy (September 2021), the number of new applicants further decreased to 2,479 in June, but increased to 3,390 in July and to 5,092 in August. The number of new applicants in these months was higher than in the same months in 2020. A steep increase occurred in September 2021 (to 12,726 cases) and in October (to 33,288 cases), again due to the worsening of pandemic situation.

Target groups

Workers Businesses Citizens
Employees in standard employment
Self-employed
Does not apply to businesses Does not apply to citizens

Actors and funding

Actors Funding
National government
Social insurance
National funds

Social partners

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

Trade unions Employers' organisations
Role Unknown Unknown
Form Not applicable Not applicable

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

  • Unknown
  • Main level of involvement: Unknown

Involvement

The information on social partner's involvement is not available.

Views and reactions

The information on social partner's involvement is not available.

Sources

  • 06 April 2020: Pandemic nursing benefit and pandemic sickness benefit. MPSVR SR. (Pandemické ošetrovné a pandemické nemocenské. MPSVR SR) (www.employment.gov.sk)
  • 06 April 2020: Infomation about coronavirus. How to claim the sickness benefit. (www.socpoist.sk)
  • 06 April 2020: Act No. 461/2003 Coll. on Social insurance (Zákon č. 461/2003 Z. z. o sociálnom poistení) (www.slov-lex.sk)
  • 11 September 2020: Institute of Social Policy. First aid to Slovakia (www.employment.gov.sk)
  • 01 December 2020: Institute of Social Policy. First aid to Slovakia. Update 7 (institutsocialnejpolitiky.gov.sk)
  • 19 March 2021: Institut socialnej politiky (marec 2021), Prva pomoc Slovensku (www.employment.gov.sk)
  • 30 June 2021: Inštitút sociálnej politiky (jún 2021), Prvá pomoc Slovensku (www.employment.gov.sk)
  • 20 September 2021: Inštitút sociálnej politiky, september 2021 (institutsocialnejpolitiky.sk)
  • 30 November 2021: Institute of Social Policy: First Aid to Slovakia: Continuous report on social help to workers and families (november 2021) (www.employment.gov.sk)
  • 01 December 2021: More favourable pandemic sickness benefit ended. How does the sickness benefit work in the quarantine? (Výhodnejšia pandemická PN skončila. Ako teraz funguje péenka v karanténe?) (index.sme.sk)
  • 01 December 2021: How to apply for the benefits without a visit during pandemic (Ako požiadať o jednotlivé dávky bez návštevy pobočky počas koronakrízy) (www.socpoist.sk)

Citation

Eurofound (2020), Introduction of the pandemic sickness benefit, measure SK-2020-13/386 (measures in Slovakia), EU PolicyWatch, Dublin, https://static.eurofound.europa.eu/covid19db/cases/SK-2020-13_386.html

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