Author Topic: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office  (Read 6070 times)

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gen xer

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Re: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office
« Reply #15 on: August 02, 2014, 07:16:08 PM »
There's pro-active and then there's getting too far ahead of yourself.  It's all fine and well that people are taking the allergy seriously and wanting to be accommodating but I agree with the posters who say ask the allergy sufferer what really needs to be done.  Don't start on what kind of snacks people can bring and changing over offices etc.  It may not be necessary.


JustCallMePat

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Re: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office
« Reply #16 on: August 02, 2014, 08:05:43 PM »
Thank you everyone for the input.  We have a unique work environment and haven't in the past needed to deal with issues like this! ;)

DanaJ

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Re: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office
« Reply #17 on: August 04, 2014, 06:13:42 PM »
We had a co-worker with a very severe peanut allergy and two with significant shell-fish allergies. A the time we also had a relatively open-concept office plan. Peanut products were banned in our office, but no one complained or struggled with it.

For those who say "Well it's up to her to bring her Epi-Pen." This is very true, however Epi-Pens are used in critical life-threatening situations and even with an emergency Epi-Pen injection, the person may still die. It's not at all like when my exBF had a cat allergy so he'd take a lot of Benedryl before we went to my cat-loving grandma's house.

In the seven years that she worked for our company, we only had one incident when a new employee hadn't been notified about brining peanut products to the office. Someone noticed the allergic employee's face looked really puffy, and she was taken to the hospital for antihistamines by IV. She did not require her Epi-Pen because she was not suffering from anaphylaxis (yet).

Overall, the peanut ban really didn't affect anyone very much. The two with shellfish allergies were fine as long as they didn't try to eat it. (And sadly one was very, very fond of shellfish and was not happy to develop the allergy). It meant that anything with seafood was labelled carefully for company potlucks. Plenty of people did eat products that contained peanuts and/or shellfish at restaurants nearby during their lunch hour.

The employee should be able to advise your HR department in greater detail about how her allergy needs to be accommodated, and then employees can be informed about the reasonable accommodation that is being offered.

Lynda_34

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Re: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office
« Reply #18 on: August 23, 2014, 01:40:53 PM »
Posting for an update.  Wondered how everything worked out.

JustCallMePat

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Re: Accomodating Health Issues in the Office
« Reply #19 on: August 29, 2014, 09:04:16 PM »
It's worked out surprisingly well.  I think it's an amazing group, but human nature being what it is, I anticipated some issues - and none have materialized.  The snack bar has been cleansed of peanut-containing items, and resupplied with alternatives. Wipes have been stocked at all of our kiosk PCs (we have several computer systems in the area and not everyone has once of each type at their desk so there are some shared units).  We all got a good lesson on the cause and effects of such an allergy and training on how to use an EpiPen should it ever be needed.  The "other" location hasn't been quite so accommodating and we're looking to see how it works out there but have minimized her need to do much off-site work.  I think we can declare victory on this and I really do appreciate the good advice here!   ;D