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Small rant!

Hello all

i just need to have a little rant, a few weeks ago i posted that i had to take a few days off work as i caught tonsillitis... and my manager seemed annoyed with me when i called in sick.

well, I returned to work last week and had my 'return to work' interview, she said she has concerns about my sickness absences (I have had 5 absences in a year, totalling about 17 days i think), she said this is too high. But the thing that annoyed me, is i have had eight medical appointments over the past year, using two or three hours here and there out of work time. we are allowed up to six in a year with no questions asked and if a person needs more then it is at their managers discretion. Considering i have also taken some out of my own time, my manager seemed quite happy to let me go to them, and in fact went to the length of saying you MUST attend the etc etc, but then last week at my 'return to work' interview, she said she has added up the number of hours taken for appointments, and she has some concern about these as well, but SHE agreed to them!!!! from now on i will take appointments out of my own time, and had i known she was going to say all of this i would never had taken them from work time, i only took them because my manager urged me to.

Anyway, she is meeting with HR this week to go over the next steps, she mentioned writing to my doctor, which, although i have nothing to hide, i would NOT be happy about. Argh!

10 Replies

Hello. Sorry to hear you are dealing with such a stressful situation at work. As far as I know you are protected by the Disability Discrmination Act, which covers lupus. Your time off sick for lupus related illness cannot be taken into account. Your HR team should know this. Otherwise seek advice from the Citizens Advice Bureau. As for your medical appointments it sounds like she is being totally unreasonable. I really hope you get this sorted very quickly, in your favour. She has probably not heard of lupus before and has no idea what she is dealing with. Good luck.



Totally agree with Wendy39, only other thing I would mention is, if you have an occupational health department ask for them to become involved and agree for them to have access to your medical files if need be. Not your line manager, they are medical personnel and have to abide by the data protection and confidentiality rules


Thank you both for replying. I'm definitely not letting them write to my doctor directly, I have a good gp who wont just give them everything. And in fact, the occupational health was also really good like that, he was as vague as possible with them at the same time as giving them the info they needed. I'm just amazed a manager can tell you that you must take appts, and then after youve had them all, tell you that you've had too many argh.

Also, in my occ health report, the doctor said I should be allowed to work from home on occasions. But they said no. However, someone else on my team worked from home yday and he does the same type of work as me. Surely that is a reasonable adjustment that they are ignoring where I'm concerned?

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Hi natal1a,

Sorry to hear that you're still having trouble at work. I've pointed you towards our booklets on work before so I won't do it again. Have you taken our booklets in for your manager to read? I can send you hard copies if you'd like.

Do you have any idea as to why your manager seems to have had a change of mind regarding appointments etc?

Keep us up to date.




There is no point showing her the leaflets as she doesn't seem that interested.

I had my meeting with her today and I have been put on 'informal' review, which means for the next year i can't have more than 4 absences. And I will also now need to make up any time for medical appointments. I guess it could have gone worse.


I know you say it could have gone worse but please still seek advice about this. I am sure she is totally wrong.


How do I get this booklet please? My manager seems to have no understanding of Lupus at all. They know I'm very light sensitive in my eyes and needed blinds in office shut as I get scleritis. Id also got a cyst in eye from sun coming through window. So they moved the desks around to make the office look pretty putting 3 desks along the wall facing 2 massive windows! I got temporary light blindness after a few minutes! You have to wonder at such ignorance!! I got black out rollers moved from corridor windows and put up at the office ones and have got new glasses with dark tint on so hopefully these will help when I'm working on base. It's things like these that smack of ignorance so maybe a booklet might be helpful. Thanks.


Hi MandaM,

The booklets can both be found here:

They are called 'I Want to Work' and 'When and Employee has lupus'.

There are a number of publications that might be of interest to you there actually. Namely, 'LUPUS and Light Sensitivity'. Maybe you could show this to your manager?

Have you spoken to your GP or consultant about the symptoms you are experiencing with your eyes?



Hi Nat, i totally feel for you I have had a battle on my hands before in work, regarding my position and the worry about how things were and not having a understanding boss, this was because I always attend my hospital app in my own time and try and go to them on my days of i work on a rota basis and I was told I couldn't have the same day to attend blood monitoring clinic. My boss said they did not have to let me have that day as my day off ahhhh if they did. I rung my head office myself and mentioned to them I am registered disabled and I felt as though I was not being supported, when my manager said If you can't do the job they can sack you if she did, I asked Paul to send me the guidelines on working with lupus and having an employee and looked up my rights, now when she opens her soon unsympathetic big gob about something. Like I needed to change my day of to go to see my liver consultant, I just remind her that my condition needs me to have on going treatment so therefore she can not stop me....I pointed out if I had cancer and needed chemo would you say I couldn't change my shift....mmmmmmm that had her so she wound her neck back in.....good luck chick we are all routing for you to get the right treatment. I hate the fact that employers can make us feel they have us over a barrel when we are probably the most thoughtful and hate being of sick . unlike people who just phone in for the simply sniffle.

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Natal1a, Your boss has no right to contact your doctor. She can ask you for medical certificates to prove you've been each time you said you have but that's where interference begins if she goes beyond that. Last time I checked we have privacy laws in place so that if a medical certificate is needed the doctor is not allowed to say what you have but he can only state that you had a medical complaint on at any given appointment. 

Hope this helps.


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