Thyroid UK
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Problems at work re absence

I’ve now had five periods of absence from work this year, totalling 11.5 days, so just over two working weeks. This has triggered an absence review meeting and I am now effectively on report and my job is potentially at risk if my absence record does not improve.

The absences were; two respiratory viruses, two episodes of diarrhoea, when I had to stay off for 48 hours even though I felt OK, and a single day off with a heavy cold, so I don’t see that I can do anything to improve my absence record. As I see it, these are all completely random things. For example, my DH and the woman I share an office with have both had awful colds in the last few weeks and I didn’t catch either.

I’ve never declared a long-term health condition, but I’m wondering now whether I should declare that I am hypo and whether that will give me any protection in the long run.

Has anyone else been in a similar position?


4 Replies

I guess the first question is how understanding do you think your employer is? And, are there professionals in the Organisation with clinical knowledge such as an Occupational Health department? I'd say based on personal experience that it is worth making your line management aware that you have a chronic condition and the associated affects on your health. Once this is noted, your employer cannot deny that they know and that you might need reasonable adjustments in the work place, this might be a more relaxed view of absence and that you have little control over this. Build up a folder of details that you can talk through with work including the symptoms associated with being Hypo, the action that you are taking such as lifestyle, rest, work-life balance, supplements, any specialists you see, in other words throw as much data at them as you can. Best of luck

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I'm sorry I cannot answer your question but someone will come along soon, I am sure and be able to help.

12 days off sick seems doesn't seem high enough to be reprimanded.


I wish that was so. The employer I work for asks for a mountain of paperwork to be completed after 3 periods of absence - which can amount to as few as 3 days. We have national targets to keep sickness under 7 days a head. It's all bonkers, cos the moment a colleague breaks a leg, has a heart attack or gets bronchitis the stats are completely blown.

I think it does come down to employer-understanding. Declaring a long term condition ought to make things better but it's been my observation that it can occasionally make things worse, depending on your first line manager's response (some are great and some get power crazy, don't they? :) ). Good managers will consider reasonable adjustments under the Equality Act 2010, others need persuading that hypothyroidism is a condition that falls within the remit of the Act (which it does).

For what it's worth, I'd advise simply taking the "on report" thing in your stride, chalking up to being a barking management requirement and carrying on as normal. The period will pass and then you'll be off report again. They'd have no grounds to dismiss you, given the facts of this case.

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Give ACAS a call. They were really good when I spoke to them about reasonable adjustments.


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