Saarbrücken (dpa / lrs) - Less exercise and more fears: In the Corona year 2020, those insured with Barmer health insurance in Saarland were on sick leave more often than ever before due to psychological complaints and diseases of the musculoskeletal system.

That comes from an evaluation by the health insurance company on Thursday.

"Corona has isolated and psychologically stressed many employees through short-time work and home office," said Dunja Kleis, state manager of Barmer in Rhineland-Palatinate and Saarland.

The number of days off work due to mental suffering has been growing for years without Corona.

Because of psychological ailments such as depression, every employee from Saarland insured with Barmer was absent for around 4.7 days last year.

This is the highest value among all federal states and around 62 percent more than ten years ago.

According to the analysis, musculoskeletal disorders also led to around 4.7 days of absence per insured employee.

The number of days absent due to such illnesses has risen regularly in recent years.

In 2019 people were absent due to musculoskeletal disorders on average 4.6 days, ten years ago they were absent around 3.7 days.

Most often, people complained of back pain in 2020.

"In the corona pandemic, training in a club or gym was hardly possible," said Kleis.

"A lack of exercise promotes back pain and could have contributed to the peak in absenteeism due to musculoskeletal problems."


According to the health insurance company, the Barmer evaluation includes reports of incapacity for work from around 54,000 gainfully employed persons insured with Barmer who are resident in Saarland.

The data were evaluated anonymously.

© dpa-infocom, dpa: 210408-99-126091 / 2