Wednesday, November 28, 2012

Support needed for workers with cancer

When we talk about cancer, obviously we're not talking about just one single disease - since there are over 200 different types of cancer.

As such, this also just as obviously means that there will be a high degree of variance in terms of diagnoses as well as prognoses.

And in the workplace there are currently over half a million people with some form of cancer (560,000 to be more precise) according to new research carried out by Oxford Economics. And the contribution to the economy from a number of people this large is of course significant, running to 16 billion pounds annually.

With improved detection rates over time, and resultant higher number of people being diagnosed plus greater survival rates, it's estimated that the number of people in the workplace with cancer could actually almost double to a million people - meaning that greater support for people with any form of the disease will be imperative as we move forward.

Currently there are 63,000 people with cancer who would prefer to be in work but are unable to make this happen due to various barriers making it too difficult. The Oxford Economics study throws up some important issues that will be of interest to HR strategists as well as those interested in workplace wellbeing strategies.

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