Almost a million people in the U.S. are living with multiple sclerosis (MS). The majority of those diagnosed are between the ages of 20 and 50 – during the most productive years of their careers. An employer who understands the disease can help employees with MS maintain their productivity and manage stress that can make symptoms worse.
Ways to help employees with MS
Be flexible. Allow flexible schedules and working from home. Even small changes in core body temperature can make MS symptoms worse, so hot and cold weather or workplaces can hurt an employee’s productivity.
Be proactive. Assess your workplace for things that could be barriers to a person with mobility issues. Automatic doors, accessible entrances and bathrooms, elevators and ramps, and clear pathways make it easier for everyone to get around.
Be accommodating. With small accommodations and simple modifications to their work stations, many people with MS can stay productive and remain at work.
Be positive. People with disabilities bring diversity to your workplace. They can provide the valuable perspective that comes with different circumstances and experiences. Build a top-down culture of inclusion, to help you attract and retain top talent.
Be the total package. Offer a complete benefits package, including pharmacy benefits, short term and long term disability, and long term care insurance.
Be knowledgeable about MS. Check out our e-book, A Guide to Multiple Sclerosis for Well-Informed Employers. You’ll find more information about MS, suggestions for accommodating various challenges caused by MS symptoms, and resources to help you meet the needs of your employees and your business.