All residents of Finland are insured under the Health Insurance Act. Provided they meet the qualifying criteria, they are entitled to sickness allowance as compensation for loss of income resulting from short-term incapacity for work. The statistics on sickness allowances describe the economic security arrangements for employees and self-employed people during unemployment. They examine allowance recipients and expenditures from a variety of perspectives. With certain qualifications, they also describe disease prevalence in the working-age population. Because of the application of a waiting period, only periods of illness exceeding ten days are included in the data.