COVID-19 is an occupational disease!


An employee who is incapable of work due to an occupational disease may receive benefits from ZUS. Is COVID-19 an occupational disease? Read on and find out more about it!

Occupational disease

The Labor Code defines an occupational disease. If it is recognized, the employer should take appropriate steps, including:

  • determine the causes of an occupational disease as well as the nature and size of the risk of this disease,

  • proceed immediately to remove the factors causing the occupational disease,

  • ensure the implementation of medical recommendations.

The Ministry of Health has confirmed that COVID-19 is a contagious disease that can be considered an occupational disease. Sanepid is the authority authorized to establish an occupational disease and it is he who issues the relevant decision in this regard. COVID-19 may be an occupational disease, but the condition is that the disease occurred under occupational exposure conditions!

Benefits from ZUS and COVID-19

An employee who has a confirmed occupational disease is entitled to various benefits from ZUS. Their catalog was listed in the Act of 30 October 2002 on social insurance against accidents at work and occupational diseases. An employee suffering from an occupational disease is entitled to the following benefits:

  • sickness allowance,

  • rehabilitation benefit,

  • compensatory allowance,

  • one-off compensation,

  • disability pension for work incapacity,

  • training pension,

  • survivor's pension,

  • supplement to survivor's pension,

  • care supplement,

  • covering the costs of treatment in the field of dentistry and preventive vaccinations as well as the supply of orthopedic items to the extent specified by the Act.

It is worth mentioning that the sickness benefit due to incapacity to work due to an occupational disease amounts to 100%. Contractors and employees who do not have accident contributions are not entitled to benefits.

COVID-19 is an occupational disease - summary

COVID-19 can be considered an occupational disease if it occurs under occupational exposure conditions. If the inspectorate issues a decision that a given employee has an occupational disease, then he or she may apply for many benefits from ZUS. If the decision is negative, the employee has 30 days to appeal against it.