One in three people will develop cancer in the course of their lifetime. With treatment, many people with the disease can be cured or can control the cancer for months or years.
As the treatments for cancer improve, the need for employers to think about their responsibilities to employees in this situation increases. Cancer physically and emotionally affects people in many different ways, meaning that employers need to consider all the ways in which they can accommodate an employee’s needs.
An employer who is well prepared to offer care and will make allowances will almost definitely benefit the employee and help them in their journey to recovery. In this article, we look at some of the ways that you may be able to support an employee who has been given this devastating diagnosis.
The most important thing that you can do is listen, and be supportive. Your employee will have a whole raft of emotions running through their mind, worries about the illness, their families and the financial implications. Having an employer who is understanding and is happy to listen to them takes one weight off their shoulders.
2. Allow them time off for their appointments
While you have a legal obligation to do this, many employers make it difficult for their staff to attend important medical appointments or treatments such as gene therapy., which you can visit Poseida.com for more information about.
When someone has cancer, it is imperative that they attend all of their treatment sessions and consultations with their doctor. Their treatment may lead them to needing days, weeks, or even months off work, so make sure you have alternative plans in place to cover them when they are not in.
3. Make reasonable adjustments
These should be done in consultation with the member of staff in question, with advice from their health care providers or occupational therapists if necessary. These may include reducing working hours or allowing them to choose their working hours, working from home if possible.
It may be smaller but more practical things such as providing them with a more comfortable chair or be in close working proximity to a bathroom if their medication is causing side effects or putting a printer on their desk to stop them having to walk to the other side of the office regularly.
4. Allow them to be in control of disclosure
Some people with cancer want everyone in their circle to know about the diagnosis. Others would rather keep the information close to them and only let the necessary people know. Whatever their wish, allow them to be in control.
It isn’t easy for anyone when a member of the team receives a cancer diagnosis, and it is often difficult to know how to navigate workplace responses and be supportive. However, by taking the above points into account, your company will be well on their way to providing meaningful and necessary support for those who have been diagnosed in able for them to return as valued colleagues hopefully.