Making a difference
Please note: This information relates to policies quoted after 28 September 2015.
Every business is different and people suffer with long-term illnesses in different ways. This is why 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.
Below are fictional examples of how Group Income Protection can work.
Providing Appropriate Support
Mike, a 44 year old finance manager, had been experiencing low back pain and sciatica for several years. He had an unsuccessful spinal operation 18 months before, but his symptoms had not improved and he was unable to sit for long enough at work to do his job effectively. He had been in claim for 18 months and although was due to have a second spinal operation, was sceptical about the likely success of this surgery or the potential of returning to his job.
Our rehabilitation case manager and team physiotherapist sourced a specialist spinal physiotherapist to work with Mike prior to his surgery and following his second operation. We closely monitored his progress to see if he would need further physiotherapy or chronic pain management including CBT. We also paid for him to have an ergonomic assessment of his workstation, prior to his return to work. He progressed well with his physiotherapist and made a successful return to work four months following his second operation. This has been sustained with the help of a sit-stand desk which was recommended following the ergonomic assessment.
We took the following steps to ensure the employee returned to work, as soon as possible:
- Provided additional rehabilitation services (physiotherapy).
- Gave the employee financial assistance (full benefit when he was off work completely and proportionate benefit to support his return to work).
- Helped the employer find a workplace solution to facilitate a sustained return to work and maintained productivity.
Gill had suffered a significant number of traumatic events in her personal life, which included, in a short amount of time, a number of deaths within her family. She was also supporting her daughter who had become very ill. This series of events led to her suffering from stress, anxiety and apprehension.
In January she was signed off from work and in May her employer contacted Aviva to let us know about everything. A week later our Rehabilitation Case Manager contacted them to explain the next steps and how we were planning to help Gill.
After speaking to Gill over the phone our Rehabilitation Case Manager identified and suggested appropriate counselling to help her. Through the Employee Assistance Programme, we arranged for Gill to attend face to face counselling sessions. We also started to build a return to work plan with Gill and her employer. The Rehabilitation Case Manager accompanied Gill on her first return to work meeting with her line manger, to ensure that her phased return to work matched the recommendations made by her treating clinician.
Gill had her last counselling session in August and resumed her full time hours at the end of October, with continued support from her dedicated Rehabilitation Case Manager.
In this instance we took the following steps to ensure the employee returned to work, as soon as possible:
- Sourced appropriate clinical services to assist the employee’s recovery.
- Liaised with all relevant parties to devise an appropriate return to work plan.
- Supported the employee and employer with workplace visits to facilitate a successful and sustained return to work.
- Resolved the situation without the company needing to make a claim.
Giving prompt support
David became absent from work in June due to severe aches and pains in his limbs. He was admitted to hospital and later diagnosed with vasculitis (a condition where the immune system attacks blood vessels causing them to narrow and swell). He was discharged from hospital in July however he had to attend every few weeks to have chemotherapy.
After 8 weeks absence, our Rehabilitation Case Manager was notified. An initial needs assessment was completed and it was identified that David would benefit from some physiotherapy to help build his strength. His Rehabilitation Case Manager made a referral to our specialist physiotherapy provider, on the same day. David was keen to commence a return to work as soon as possible.
Following our referral, the physiotherapist carried out an assessment two days later and recommended that David would need 8 physiotherapy sessions to help him. Aviva agreed to fund the recommended treatment and David started having his physiotherapy sessions. David completed his chemotherapy treatment in October and continued to build his stamina with the help of the on-going physiotherapy.
David returned to work in December on reduced hours, gradually increasing them over time. Aviva paid David’s employer a proportionate benefit and also funded some additional treatment sessions to support his return to work.
David returned to his full role a couple of months later and remains at work.
We helped by:
- Understanding the value of prompt referrals to specialist treatment services.
- Offering to source funding for specialist rehabilitation, vital for a successful return to work.