THOUSANDS of Slovaks work in Austria taking care of seniors, drawn by salaries and a more transparent system than in Slovakia. They can earn as much as €1,000 for two weeks of work, a wage significantly above the average in Slovakia, the Pravda daily wrote in January.

Based on official data, about 22,000 Slovaks work as health visitors in Austria, making up as much as 80 percent of foreign health visitors working here. However, many thousands may be working illegally, according to the findings of a conference meant to strengthen cooperation between Austrian and Slovak trade unions.

The average wage of a nurse in Austria is between €1,900 and €2,000 and the average wage of a health visitor is between €1,500 and €1,600. Compared with remuneration of these professions in Slovakia these earnings are several times higher. According to Jana Prčová from the Slovak Trade Unions of Health and Social Services, the average wages of attendants and care givers in Slovakia are around minimum wage. In 2012, the monthly gross wage of those taking care for ill and inert clients in Slovakia was €580.