GPs ‘are seeing patients dismissed from work over sick leave’
Businesses could be leaving themselves open to claims for unfair dismissal over sickness absence, new figures have suggested.
A study by Legal & General found that 15 per cent of GPs have seen patients who have been sacked from their job for taking time off sick, while 50 per cent saw it happen to those people who had to take leave “a few times a year” due to a recurring illness.
The worst region for this trend was found to be the north-east, with five per cent of family doctors there reporting talking to people every week who had lost their job as a result of taking too much time off.
GP Dr John Delfosse insisted work can actually be good for people who have been ill, while being unemployed can make patients feel worse.
Legal & General’s Diane Buckley said a lot of employers seem to be lacking resources to help them rehabilitate staff who have been off sick.
“[The figures] show the importance of early intervention to make sure that tailored, individual support is delivered quickly,” she added.
The government is currently considering proposals which would see traditional sick pay for employees replaced by income protection insurance.
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