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Nurses and returning to work


Re: Nurses and returning to work

Then you need your work to be supportive too. Do seek advice from Macmillan, they have a great publication about the disability act (which anyone with a cancer diagnosis falls under,) and on this site their is the EMPLOY charter. Your work place has to make reasonable adjustments . Good luck. Happy to chat. X
LL xx

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Thanks for all your help!! Its appreciated! I will be calling my union and possibly an NHS advisor and just finding out about retiring on ill health grounds.  At this moment im well so dont want to rush that, but be good to know what I need to do when I feel that time has come xx

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi dennymac,
I have also been speaking with a friend of mine, an ex-Nhs worker who looked at all options and following discussions and support from macmillan retired on grounds of ill health. She has secondary disease. Pls ask for one of these experts to help you decide what is best for you. Best wishes, LL xx

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Have sent you a private message x

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi Dennymac,

I would use ACAS and the RCN. And if you have a maggies centre near you try them and MacMillan. This is such a tough time for you. Will also be sending you a private message, pls look out for it.
LL xx

Re: Nurses and returning to work

I am currently having issues with my work.. I am a nurse and work in the NHS but havent really fely overly supported.  I was diagnosed with primary and secondary in january at the ripe age of 32 and have been off work since. Went straight into chemo, then had mastectomy and ANC and my last radio is on Monday.  My work feel that me going back to work in a busy and heavy emergency medical ward is appropriate. Its a joke! I keep asking about redeployment to an area that is more suited to my circumstances that will also allow me to have my treatment every 3 weeks and enough support to not feel pressured in an understaffed and busy environment... their reply? "be careful what you say to your boss as they may feel you are unable to do your job". I am now worrying that they arent really supporting me but looking out for themselves.  


Thats just the recent rubbish.. they have also sent me eviction notice from staff accommodation as I was on a 6 month contract and they stopped my pay with no warning.  I am seriously considering putting in a grievance but I dont have the energy with everything else thats going on!


Anyone had anything like this and willing to point me in the right direction? I will be getting RCN involoved so I have some outside support

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi SeaBreeze,


Feeling for you and any others in this horrible situation. Sending much love x x x



Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi Lexilou and anyone else in this situation!


Lexilou - sorry to hear you ended up feeling you had to leave but pleased that you feel it was the right decision for you given the stress of it all. 


In terms of whether the grievance route is the way to go...as you are aware I felt I was put in a situation where I had no option but to respond to my employer citing aspects which I felt had been badly managed/handled (choose your word!) I also felt Occupational Health were not supportive...(return to 8 hour days after 2 weeks with 2 hours rush hour travel on public transport on top). I was crawling home during the first few weeks.    


My emails ended up being taken as a greivance by my employer...I spent a lot of time when I was recovering and low on energy providing evidence, showing where I felt the company had not adhered to policy, submitting a formal complaint to Occupational Health. It took a lot of energy, the whole employer management of things caused acute stress and anxiety, plus disrupted sleep over a long period. I would say the impact in terms of stress was worse than getting through the cancer itself.


Did it get me anywhere...as with many things companies like to close things down in whatever way they can. Some parts of the grievance upheld, some not. Do I still feel agrieved - yes. Do I feel there are acute irony's given the company claims to hold certain values very highly and claims health and safety is its top priority - yes. Has it stressed me out - yes horrendously. I guess what I am trying to say is that perhaps at the end of the day there is not much difference between either route...grievance or just leaving... or going part time and looking for an exit plan....  


I'm not a nurse but Lexilou and I have shared certain parts of our journey and return raises issues shared by all sectors/professions.


I remain grateful to my close friends who have listened and assisted through the whole return saga (one of whom has just read this over my shoulder). If anyone else finds themsleves in such a situation both Lexilou and I have posts in other occupational health and return strands...


XXX Seabreeze (not much breeze actually - not sure whether regaining calm after the storm or whether to battle the next storm)


Re: Nurses and returning to work

A little update,

I did not complete my prolonged phssed return to work, instead i resigned. Possibly not the most sensible, but the stresses dealing with management were adversely affecting my sleep and recovery. Grievence proceedure may have been the way to go,,, but i could not entertain that stress either.

I am so happy not having to deal with those stresses now.

LL x

Re: Nurses and returning to work

I too am a nurse and been off since diagnosis, as my head wasn't right to start with. I got started on chemo 3 weeks after initial diagnosis so would have been off since then anyway. I work in ICU so was told there was no way I should be working due to the infection risk. Once I have surgery, obviously I'll have the physical recovery time required and go back on a phased return when I'm ready. My bosses, HR and OH have been great so far.

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi Mad4cavs,


Love the name - we are down to ur last one now & what a character she is!!


Do as best suits you, take all the advice & support you need.


Good luck for a speedy non-eventful recovery from the upcoming times. xx


Best wishes LL xx

Re: Nurses and returning to work

I am also a nurse and luckily I managed to work through my 20 sessions of radiotherapy. I have an absolutely wonderful manager who allowed me to work if and when I wanted. Found work helped me to stay sane!! Although was tiring at times

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hope all goes well mad4cavs, when I got my diagnosis last Sept, I continued to work till just before my chemo started in October, at first it was ok but I definatly needed to be off work as the weeks progressed, as my head was also not with it in the end.
I think that's one of my concerns about returning as need to be fully on it ( if you know what I mean )

Re: Nurses and returning to work

Thanks LL
Have had a read.
I know I will have a phased return and see OH before, I guess am a bit worried about coping with the fatigue once back to work whilst still being able to enjoy sometime with family and friends.
Kbheal x

Re: Nurses and returning to work

just diagnosed waitng for surgery not working as my head not straight and because of the nature of our work thought it better to have my time before surgery in 2 weeks


Re: Nurses and returning to work

Hi Kbheal


you will find some exchanges here....




And am happy to expand further if you wish. I have found it very hard, being mindful of my professional duties and my physical restrictions at the moment. I look well - therefore it is assumed i am!


Best wishes


LL xx

Nurses and returning to work

Hi there
Are there any other nurses out there who have had experience of this.

I am 6 weeks post op WLE and sentinal node biopsy, had chemo prior to surgery ( 3 FEC and 3 tax )
Am due for radiotherapy planning end of this week and then start 15 sessions after a couple of weeks.
Had RT delayed due to brushing, swelling and haematoma.

Thanks in anticipation