Do hospital/dental visits count as sick leave?

I’m wondering what the situation is when salaried employees take small amounts of time off for medical/dental visits - say a couple of days in a month, or the odd afternoon. Asking on behalf of my girlfriend, who needs to get a couple of wisdom teeth removed and a root canal in the near future.

Is the time taken off deducted from the employee’s salary, or is this covered (or partially covered) by NHI (or labor insurance, or the employer)?

Is Article 4 of Regulations of Leave-Taking of Workers the relevant law covering this?

When a worker must receive medical service or rest on account of ordinary injury, sickness, or physical reasons, he shall be entitled to ordinary sickness leave according to the following provisions:
Where accounted ordinary sick leave does not exceed thirty days in one year, fifty percent of salary shall be paid. In cases where Labor Insurance payments do not reach fifty percent of salary, the employer shall make up the difference.

I’m asking because her employer, a relatively small company, seems a bit sketchy with this kind of stuff - she also took off maybe 1.5 days last month for hospital appointments, which I believe were deducted from her salary. Is that normal here?

I would say that any sort of medical procedure counts as sick days.

What Special City/County do you guys live in?

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Does she know her company’s regulation?

If she took personal leave for the appointments instead of sick leave, it may be normal to be decucted.

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We live in Taipei City. Does that make a difference?

She could probably check her contract I guess. Could that overrule what’s stated in the law above?

She might indeed have done this. I think she told them she had hospital appointments, but I’m not sure whether she specifically declared it as wanting to take sick leave.

Yeah. Labour relations with employers take place at the second administrative level. County/City hall. The best answer that you could possibly receive would be asking the personnel at Taipei City Hall for an interpretation of your situation.

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I dont think so, unless the regulation is better than the law for employees. She maybe can take sick leave following to the company’s procedure in the regulation.

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If she didn’t explicitly use paid leave, wouldn’t there always be deductions/reductions (salary/hourly)? Sick days should be half-pay, normal leave days are unpaid. (under LSA)


in our company, as long as you bring a receipt from the doctor its counted as sick leave.
in the past you didnt have to bring a doc’s note, but now you can’t just say “i am bu shu fu” and stay at home on expense of your sick days, some employees exploited that and treated sick leave as another form of paid leave so now we need to show proof we really went to the doc…


In most companies sick leave is only half pay.

Same with ours, you need a doctor’s note saying you were sick for anything more than half a day. Kinda BS as a days rest gets you back on your feet with most minor illnesses, having to spend half of that going to a doctor for a note doesn’t help and is certainly a waste of NHI resources.

All of these things can be done in the evenings or on the weekend.


Not really, since (i) she typically has to do unpaid overtime until 9-11pm (and often later) and at weekends, (ii) NTUH, where she had some of the appointments, is open Monday to Friday 9am to 4:30pm, (iii) the dentist’s appointments also depend on the availability of the dentist, and (iv) she may need a day or two off after having the teeth extracted, but thanks for the ill-informed suggestion.

If it’s unpaid overtime just take the time off then, can’t dock pay that she doesn’t receive!

There are other hospitals.

Then pick one that is available, there are hundreds of dentists in Taipei.

Understandable, get them done on Friday night and have the whole weekend to recover.

You’re welcome!


I might not have expressed myself clearly, or you may have reading difficulties - to clarify, I wasn’t asking for your opinion of the ethics of people taking time off work for essential medical issues (or whatever the hell it is you felt inclined to express your feelings about). I was asking about the rules/norm regarding this. If you prefer to do this stuff exclusively at weekends, go ahead, I’m not going to try to encourage you to do otherwise because (i) it’s not my business and (ii) I don’t care.

Yes, there are different hospitals in Taiwan, and yes, there are different dentists in Taiwan. Maybe the NTUH appointment was a follow-up appointment with a doctor who already has her previous records/scans on file, where it didn’t seem worthwhile to transfer the records to a different hospital (which would have in any case required going there during the working day) so she could go outside working hours specifically to meet your approval? (Do you think that only unemployed and retired people go to NTUH?) Maybe the dentist’s appointment is with a good dentist for root canal work who seems competent and has already done the X-rays and proposed a treatment plan, where it again didn’t seem worthwhile to go around more dentists to find another good one with availability just to meet your approval?

Yes and also people who think because they heard a doctor or a hospital is good then only that one exists in their minds. NTUH is old and crap but thousands of people take leave just to go there. Same goes for the dentist, there is a reason the dentist is not available…

She might be able to get away with sick leave for the NTUH visit for half pay but I don’t think she can get one for the dentist. Everyone I know either goes on evenings, weekends or plan a day off to do this among other things like banking.


legally, any hospital visit including dentist is ok, iiuc

No. If the employer has official 工作規則, check that too and not just the contract (not that the 規則 can overrule the law either). Since it’s a small business, there might not be one. If in doubt, you can ask the labor department, as medium to large employers are required to register theirs with the department.

True – the employer does not need to pay for 事假 unless the contract, the 工作規則 or a separate agreement says otherwise.

I would also say so.