Epilepsy Awareness

Epilepsy in the workplace

Did you know that people with epilepsy have one of the lowest rates of employment among disabled people? 

In this podcast Andy and Alice meet with MHR employee, and Epilepsy awareness advocate Joe. They discuss how businesses can bust the myths about the condition and what managers can do to create more awareness. 

According to the Office for National Statistics, only 34 per cent of people who identify epilepsy as their main health condition are in work. Disabled people are more than twice as likely as non-disabled people to be out of work. 

How business can support employees with epilepsy

One of the primary ways businesses can support employees with epilepsy is by fostering an inclusive and understanding work environment. This can involve implementing the following measures: 

  • Education and Awareness: Providing training to employees about epilepsy, its symptoms, and appropriate responses during a seizure can reduce stigma and create a supportive atmosphere. Awareness programs can also help colleagues understand how to assist their co-workers during seizures while maintaining respect for their privacy and dignity. 
  • Flexible Work Arrangements: Offering flexible work schedules or telecommuting options can accommodate individuals with epilepsy who may need to manage their condition or recover from seizures without undue stress. Flexibility allows employees to balance their health needs with their professional responsibilities effectively. 
  • Safety Measures: Ensuring workplace safety is crucial for employees with epilepsy. This can include conducting risk assessments to identify potential hazards, implementing emergency response protocols, and providing necessary accommodations such as ergonomic adjustments or designated safe areas. 
  • Reasonable Accommodations: Collaborating with employees to determine reasonable accommodations, such as adjustments to workload, break times, or access to medical support, can facilitate their success in the workplace while managing their condition effectively. 
  • Supportive Culture: Cultivating a culture of support and open communication encourages employees to disclose their epilepsy and seek assistance when needed without fear of discrimination or negative repercussions. Promoting empathy and understanding among colleagues fosters a sense of belonging and mutual respect. 

By prioritizing awareness, accommodation, and support, businesses can create an inclusive environment where employees with epilepsy can thrive professionally while managing their health condition effectively. Investing in the well-being of all employees not only benefits individuals but also contributes to a positive and productive workplace culture.