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Getting started

The guidance contained here was first published in 2004 and therefore makes no reference to the Fit Note. The majority of the guidance contained herein remains relevant, although readers will need to keep in mind the existence of the Fit Note in applying any potential recommendations.

Putting in place policies and procedures to manage sickness absence and return to work need no be difficult - there is already an established body of good practice that you can build upon. You may already have some elements of a policy in place but is worth reviewing them for their effectiveness. In particular, you might need to take a fresh look at how you:

Open and constructive discussion between all parties is essential for successful management of sickness absence and return to work. Though you are not legally required to provide a return to work policy, it is often convenient to set down expectations, roles and procedures so that everyone is clear about who is responsible for taking action and what they should be doing.

Updated 2012-10-01