On April 28, 2017, the Senate adopted changes without amendments, facilitating the issuing of electronic sick leave certificates. As of the second half of 2018 (precisely from July 1, 2018) electronic format will completely replace printed sick leave certificates.

The changes are provided for by the draft act amending the act on the provision of cash considerations from social security in case of sickness and maternity and the act amending the act on the provision of cash considerations from social security in case of sickness and maternity and some other acts.

Electronic sick leave certificates have been issued since the beginning of 2016. Despite this, few physicians decide to issue sick leave certificates in an electronic form. As reported by MPIPS, as low as 3% of physicians authorized to issue certificates of incapacity for work have switched to electronic form.

The reasons are, among others, the cost of purchasing an electronic signature, or in the absence thereof, a complicated ePUAP authentication procedure.

Therefore, ZUS (Social Insurance Institution) has proposed that the physicians be authorized to issue electronic sick leave certificates through the ZUS’s information system. The draft act provides that the medical certificate shall be issued in line with the model determined by the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS), through the ICT system made available free of charge by the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS), in the form of an electronic document signed with a certified electronic signature, signature confirmed with ePUAP trusted profile,or by means of confirmation of origin and integrity of data available in the information system made available free of charge by the Social Insurance Institution (ZUS).

The act was referred to be signed by the President. The provisions regarding the obligation to issue sick leave certificates in an electronic form will apply from July 1, 2018.