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Case studies

Every business is different, and no two people suffer from long-term illness in exactly the same way. So we make sure that every Group Income Protection claim is treated on an individual basis. In every case, we’ll draw on our experience to examine the circumstances carefully, and help your employees recover and return to work as quickly as possible. These examples may help to show you the benefits that Group Income Protection could provide for you and your workforce:

Working together…

After back surgery, a 37-year-old woman had been away from work for four months. She was still having mobility problems, describing weakness and stiffness in her legs, and her consultant had referred her for physiotherapy but her condition was unlikely to improve much further. We arranged for her to meet an Occupational Health visitor.

Together, it was agreed that it could be useful to conduct a workstation assessment, particularly if it looked at her seating. Her employer followed the recommendations and everyone agreed a phased return-to-work over a four-week period. The woman started this phased return to work after receiving one month's full benefit, and eventually returned to work in a full-time capacity. We were able to help in this example by:

  • Providing additional support services (Occupational Health assessments).
  • Giving the employee financial assistance (one month's benefit) and support.
  • Helping the employer find a workplace solution to facilitate early return to work, reducing the amount of time this employee could have been absent.

Finding alternatives…

A 51-year-old man had been absent from work for six weeks. Following the breakdown of his marriage and a recent family bereavement, he'd been showing symptoms of anxiety and depression.

His company had a 52-week deferred period on their Group Income Protection policy, but they let us know about his absence after six weeks. We talked to everyone involved: the employer, the employee, and the employee’s GP. His GP agreed that counselling could be useful, but there was a lengthy waiting list for NHS counselling in the area. So we decided to fund a course of Cognitive Behavioural Therapy instead. After this therapy, the man returned to work on a phased basis. He was back at work full-time well within the deferred 52-week period, with no need for the company to make a claim. We were able to help in this example by:

  • Consulting everyone involved to find the best, personalised course of action.
  • Finding an alternative appropriate treatment (Cognitive Behavioural Therapy).
  • Reducing the amount of time this employee could have been absent.
  • Resolving the situation without the company needing to make a claim.

Giving prompt support…

A 51-year-old woman had been away from work due to breast cancer. Her employer let us know about her absence after six weeks. When our Rehabilitation Case Manager spoke to her, she'd had surgery and was due to start chemotherapy and radiotherapy.

At the time, we couldn't offer our early intervention services but we did refer her to 'Look Good, Feel Better', a cancer support charity that helps women manage the visible side-effects of cancer. She made an appointment, and started using their make-up techniques to help her feel better about her appearance. The NHS has since offered her the same service but, by referring her promptly, she had valuable additional support right from the beginning of her treatment.

We were able to help in this example by:

  • Understanding the value of prompt referrals to specialist organisations.
  • Offering referrals for services that complement medical treatments.
  • Restoring confidence, vital for a successful return to work.

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