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Returning to work - how far does my employer have to go to accommodate me?

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Hi all

Pre SAH I was Senior Administrative Secretary at a private girls' school. I worked 9am - 2.30pm during term time only.

My consultant has finally agreed to support my return to work in the new year, but she will only allow 2 days per week for at least the first two months and then see how I cope with that before adding more days. With this timescale it could be the end of the school year in July before I am back up to full speed (fingers x'd I get that far).

I have been very lucky and received my full pay for the last four months whilst on sick leave :-D& they have employed a temp to cover my duties. Now I will hopefully be going back two days a week, spaced out to try and avoid over-tiredness.

What I would like to know is where I stand from a financial point of view - are they only going to pay me for the two days I can work now or what? Does anyone know what the legal standpoint here is? My contract doesn't mention this eventuality and all the sites I been on trying to find out give vague and sometimes conflicting info.:confused:

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Hi Helen

I returned to work last week. I am an NHS administrator. Our occupational health service is supervising my return. I was working 35 hours before my SAH. I am working 6 hours per week, spread over two days, and like you they are separated (Tue & Thurs) until 19 January, when I meet with occy health. They expect my return to take about 6 months to work up to the 35 hours.

I don't think there is a particular law that covers this, I believe that it's up to each company to decide their policy. As even within each health board it differs. My daughter works for NHS 24 in Glasgow. They use an outside company to oversee their occupational health service, who almost to a person give employees the full 8 weeks, at full pay, for a phased return. My health board also has provision for up to an 8 week phased return on full pay, but very seldom does it takes 8 weeks, I was told usually 4. But usually employees have had broken bones or maybe an operation, for which they are recovering. But there is provision for peole like me or maybe someone who has been on long term sick leave due to stress.

In this instance they don't use the 8 week system. As my phased return will be at my pace, I only get paid for the hours I work. I suppose it makes sense. I have worked for them for 2 1/2 years. I got 8 weeks full pay and 8 weeks half pay when off sick. To then pay me full pay for a few hours each week for possibly 6 months is quite a lot. It suits me as I don't have to feel guilty about my colleagues having to pick up the slack, as there is money in the budget to employ a temp for the hours that I don't work.

I hope this helps.


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I also work as an NHS Administrator for a PCT, and I am looking to return in January. Having spoken to my line manager, she is looking at a very slow phased return to work for me, 2 days a week, couple of hours a day, with a day off in between. I asked about pay (as I had the same concerns as you), and she said I will be paid my normal hours (13.5). It will have been 13 weeks since my SAH if I return as planned.

The only thing I can suggest is that you try Citizen's Advice Bureau for advice. I have used them in the past and find them very helpful. It may be that you will need to negoitiate directly with your employer if there is no legislation in place that covers this.

All the best


Sam x

Hope all goes well

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Hi my wife merrill had an sah in march and the rehab clinic told us that if eventually she does return to work,it would be under the supervision of the Shaw Trust who negotiate, her return and will also pay any employer out of pocket expenses so you could try and talk to them they seem to work very closely with rehabilition programmes,Don't know if that will help but Good luck

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Hi Helen,

I have been back at work working in pharmacy in swindon for about a month now doing 2 hours a day 5 day week. I only get paid for what i do and it is hard on the finances. Dont know if you have mortgage but my mortgage company nationwide are still paying mortgage under my insurance with them until i go over 16 hours a week. Not sure if you have anything like this but it is worth looking into. Im trying at present to get involved with support group for sah in oxford jr as i thnk people there will have lots of answers to our questions on this sort of thing. neuropsychologist at jr is settingit up for me so will let u knw if you are interested

best wishes

carol x

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