The Office of National Statistics has estimated that, in 2022, 185.6 million working days were lost due to sickness, the highest figure recorded since records began. The British economy loses £43 billion a year from this growing ‘disease burden’, with around a third of this strain being attributed to mental health problems.
Counting the Cost
A recent House of Commons Library Briefing has recently summarised the extent of exceptional public spending related to covid. The total bill related to direct out-of-the-ordinary expenditure of between £310 billion to £410 billion. If one can trust ONS population estimates, this works out at c. £4,600 to £6,100 per person.