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Insights and News


Returning to work after cancer treatment

Wednesday, 14 December 2011.

How will you fit back into your old job after surviving cancer?

Getting back to work can give you a massive psychological boost after the ordeal of treatment and a considerate employer can make all the difference. Here’s some help to prepare you for going back to work:

  • First, you need to agree a ‘return to work’ plan with your employer or human resources manager and, if your company has one, the occupational health adviser. You may also want to ask for time or training to catch up with new developments.
  • A reduction in hours is probably advisable at first and it’s something you need to discuss with your employer up front. Fortunately, they are required to consider this under the Equality Act 2010 (See MacMillan Cancer Care’s explanation of this) or the Disability Discrimination Act if you live in Northern Ireland.
  • Both you and your employer need to know your limits. Certain physical tasks like going up and down stairs may be impossible at first. Rest breaks are important and it’s best to book them into your day. And if you’ve had a brain tumour removed, for instance, you probably won’t be allowed to drive for at least a year.
  • A clear view of your finances is important. You’ll need to take stock of the effects of going back to work on insurance policies, state benefits, council tax, sick leave, annual leave, debts and mortgages. You can read more here – but talking to an independent financial adviser is probably the best way to make sure what it all means to you.


Coping with stress

It’s unlikely that employment post-cancer will be exactly the same as your pre-cancer career. You may not be able to work as hard, you may not be able to enjoy as many social activities and your responsibilities may change. If you used to be very career-focused, the adjustment can be very difficult. Fortunately, you won’t be the first person to experience this and our cancer specialists will be able to help you deal with it.


How Can Clinical Partners help?

Simply call our clinical team in confidence on 0203 326 9160 and we will recommend the most suitable therapist or support group for your individual situation. You can also fill in the form above if you would rather have us email you.


Call us for help today
Call us for help today