Sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease

Sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease provides cover for loss of income if the physician responsible for infectious disease control in the municipality or hospital district has ordered you into quarantine or isolation, or to be absent from work in order to prevent the spread of an infectious disease.

Quarantine is when the movements of a person who has been exposed to an infectious disease, or who may have been exposed to an infectious disease, are restricted for example by ordering the person to stay at home. Isolation is when a person who has contracted an infectious disease, or who with good reason is believed to have contracted an infectious disease, is cared for in a healthcare unit separately from other persons, to prevent the spread of the disease.

You can qualify for the allowance even if you are not incapable of work. If you provide for a child aged under 16 years, you can receive infectious disease allowance if your child has been ordered to stay at home due to an infectious disease and for this reason you cannot work.

You need a decision on absence from work, quarantine or isolation from the physician responsible for infectious disease control in the municipality or hospital district. A copy of the decision is sufficient. A medical certificate A is also accepted, if it contains the corresponding information and has been signed by the physician responsible for infectious disease control.

There is no entitlement to the infectious disease allowance, for example, if

  • you are working remotely and you do not incur any loss of income
  • you are on holiday
  • you have received a recommendation or an order to stay at home from your employer or your educational institution
  • the Government has recommended that you stay at home after travelling abroad

Infectious disease allowance abroad

Persons who are covered under the Finnish social security system and who have been ordered into isolation or quarantine in an EU or EEA country, in Switzerland or in Great Britain may be entitled to infectious disease allowance. In such cases, a certificate from a physician authorised to issue an isolation or quarantine order in the relevant country must be enclosed with the application.

Other situations

If you are unemployed or a student, you cannot receive infectious disease allowance since you do not incur any loss of income. However, if your physician notes that you are also incapable of work due to an infectious disease, you can apply for sickness allowance.

If you work alongside your studies or sporadically while being unemployed and you are ordered to stay away from work due to an infectious disease, you may be entitled to infectious disease allowance. 

If you have first received a certificate for sickness allowance and based on the certificate Kela has paid you sickness allowance, the decision on sickness allowance can be amended. When the decision is amended, Kela can grant infectious disease allowance for the whole period that the decision on absence from work concerns. The physician responsible for infectious disease control can issue a decision on absence from work, isolation or quarantine, or a medical certificate A with the corresponding information also for a retroactive period. 

Amount and payment

The sickness allowance on account of an infectious disease is a full compensation for the loss of income suffered. Infectious disease allowance is granted for the whole period that the decision on absence from work concerns, without any upper limit.

  • If you are a wage-earner, the allowance is determined on the basis of the wage or salary that you would have received if you had not been ordered to stay away from work. The allowance is determined based on the information provided by your employer.
  • If you are a self-employed person, the allowance is determined based on the annual income under the YEL or MYEL pension acts that is in force when the absence starts.

The infectious disease allowance is paid by payment period retrospectively. The first payment period covers 6 working days and the following payment periods 25 working days. The last payment of infectious disease allowance is paid when the entitlement to the benefit ends.

Visit Kela's e-service to check the next payment date for the infectious disease allowance.

The infectious disease allowance is paid to the employer insofar as the employer has paid a wage or salary for the time of absence from work.

The infectious disease allowance is paid for as long as the decision on absence from work, isolation or quarantine continues. The allowance is taxed in the same way as the regular sickness allowance.

Waiting period

There is no waiting period that must be completed before qualifying for the infectious disease allowance.

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