Thyroid advice

Hi, I am new to this sight. I am after some advice. Is Hypothyroidism, or at least its symtoms/effects covered under the equality act 2010?

The reason I ask is because I have had time off work over the past few years with various symptoms of this condition...Vertigo, tinnitus, fatigue and more recently panic attacks and depression. All of these were diagnosed by my GP before I was diagnosed with severe Hypothyroidism. Due to my attendance record I have to attend a stage one meeting with HR involved. I has explained to several of my supervisors how I have been feeling but got little support from many until recently. I think Hypothyroidism is not specifically covers but if it has a long term effect on daily life then it could? Can anyone advise me please. Many thanks.

13 Replies

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  • Funny you should ask that question andepau because I am currently going through same issue with my work . I have had one warning for being ill so many times eventually asked doctor to do some tests because I got in so much trouble from my work , I have been so ill again dr signed me off for 6 weeks & diagnosed with underactive thyroid . I came back to work & another official meeting on Tuesday about sickness & now awaiting managers decision with her & hr will find out next week. It seems so unfair really can't help this condition & could eventually lose job :-(

    Good luck !!!

  • I think part of the problem is that the condition is not taken seriously enough and people have a bad attitude towards it. Unless you suffer with it you have no idea how ill and low it can make you feel. I hope that all goes well with you and work. If you lost your job that would be so unfair. I think we kinda get blamed for what our bodies are doing to us and that's not right. I would much rather live without this condition as I expect you would. I hope they do the right thing and support you!! Best of luck.

  • Thank you & you too :-)

  • I did google that question & it appears it is as it's long term condition & the symptoms but you ought to google it yourself as a lot of it was confusing & contradicting I thought

  • Haha, yeh, I googled it and it was very confusing which led me here. I thought its long term effects were covered like you say. Thanks!!

  • These links might help. Hypothyroidism is a disability, it's chronic and controlled by replacement thyroid hormones 'drugs'. Do you have an union you can talk to? Take a union representative with you to the meeting with HR, or if not, somebody you know who can be a second pair of ears, a witness.

    gov.uk/definition-of-disabi...

    gov.uk/reasonable-adjustmen...

    gov.uk/if-you-become-disabl...

    I've been through similar.

  • That's very helpful, thank you. I do have a Federation I can speak to. My supervisors have told me not to worry about the meeting as it's just Policy. I can't take the risk of going in there unprepared and empty handed though. Thanks for your help.

  • Do take somebody with you though, they won't be able to speak on your behalf, but as hypos we tend to forget, so it's always useful having a backup memory, so to speak and it lets HR know you won't be messed with. Good luck. :)

  • Long term conditions are covered under the Equality Act 2010

  • I'm a HR person, who has been on Levo for more than 23 years so can totally relate. However, saying 'HR know you won't be messed with' is the wrong attitude to go into any absence meeting. The fundamental principle is you are paid to work so, of course, any organisation will want to address non attendance for whatever reason. The issue is to discuss any reasonable adjustments which any organisation MUST consider if it is a long term condition that impacts on your day to day life. That is not that they MUST do the reasonable adjustment, but that they must consider it. So either you have medical advice about what a reasonable adjustment is, or you discuss it fairly and openly with your employer.

    For instance, when I was having some trouble with my medication, my manager suggested I came in later as I struggled in the mornings.

  • Thanks. I wouldn't go to the meeting with the wrong attitude. I will discuss it with them and see if there is something they can do to help. I suffer with extreme cognitive issue which puts me at an extreme disadvantage to others within my job role.

  • Have you any thoughts of what might help? Do you feel that you are able to do your job with adjustments?

  • I have and I've disussed it with my supervisor. I can do my job with adjustments definately. I work nights too and the shift pattern is the worse. Nights is really bad for me. I have taken off with fit notes previous for vertigo, extreme fatigue and a back spasm which are all linked to thyroid issues. These periods were all before I was diagnosed with severe hypo.

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