KUALA LUMPUR ,MALAYSIA - Malaysian employees in the private sector took an average of 4.2 days of medical leave last year, which is higher than the average in other countries, the Malaysian Employers Federation (MEF) said.
In the United Kingdom, for example, the average was just 0.9 days.
"Malaysians are well known for that. They will try to take all their entitlement.
Imagine the costs that companies have to bear," MEF executive director Shamsuddin Bardan said.
The federation estimates it could cost employers RM2.7 billion ($1.12 billion) a year for employees' outpatient treatment.
An MEF survey of 202 companies revealed that, on average, 3.95 days of sick leave (with no hospitalisation) were taken per employee in all industries last year.
Shamsuddin said an estimated 19.18 million days of sick leave were taken last year.