Monday, April 22, 2024
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How To Support Employees With Long Term Health Conditions

As a business owner, you want your workplace to be an inclusive and welcoming place. There should be no discrimination on account of factors such as race, religion, sexuality, or health.

But you also want your employees to be productive and capable of carrying out their duties. And if a member of your team is living with a long term health condition, this can affect their work. It could be anything, such as chronic pain, osteoporosis, digestive issues, or reduced mobility. But whatever it may be, that’s not to say that you shouldn’t hire someone with complex medical needs – after all, that would be both unethical and illegal. But it’s important you are aware of their condition and how it can affect them on a day-to-day basis. This will allow you to empower them to work around their condition and get the support they need.

By working together with your employee, you can find solutions that enable everyone to work at the top of their game, while ensuring they feel cared for and valued in the office. Here are some ways you can support employees with long term health conditions.

Talk to them

It’s understandable that you may not have the knowledge or experience of their illness to provide practical solutions. And this is why you should talk to them. You don’t have to ask for every little detail of their condition, but you can discuss their needs and ask them how you can help them to work in the way they need. People can feel a little private when it comes to opening up about their health, so you need to show that you are empathetic and respectful of their personal information.

Offer flexible working 

Not everyone has to work in the same way. There is no reason you should demand every member of your team to work the same hours or come into the office every single day. Your employee may feel more comfortable working from home some of the time so they can manage their symptoms or attend health appointments more easily. This will reduce their feelings of stress around working, and will allow them to be more productive as they can work according to their needs.

Adapt your office

Is your workplace suitable for someone with a long term health condition? If you are not living with a health condition, you are likely viewing your office from the perspective of a relatively healthy person. But your employee may see a series of barriers and obstacles. Things like bathrooms, staircases, chairs, and the heights of desks and tables can all create issues. But they may be hesitant to bring this up with you. Again, there is no harm in asking whether there are any changes that could make their life easier. Adapting your office will not only help your employee, but will make it more welcoming for future applicants with complex needs.

Hopefully these tips will help to make your workplace more inclusive, and ensure any staff members with health conditions feel valued and protected.

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