7 out of 10 seriously ill back to work with GIP

HealthcareUnum got 7 out of 10 people with serious health problems that used its group income protection rehabilitation service back to work last year.

The statement shows 41 per cent of those who returned to work had been suffering from mental health issues, with 19 per cent with musculoskeletal problems and 9 per cent with cancer. Unum says 1,470 people with serious health problems used its rehabilitation service and over a third of those returning to work were under 40 years old.

Conditions related to the nervous system, such as multiple sclerosis, and to the heart and circulation were the next biggest conditions, both accounting for 6 per cent of people returning to work.

A statement from the provider shows 35 per cent of those returning to work were under 40 years old and 15 per cent were under 30, while 24 per cent were over 50.

The data shows women are more likely than men to use rehabilitation services.  While only 40 per cent of those covered by group income protection from Unum are female, women make up half of those returning to work.

Unum head of vocational rehabilitation Joy Reymond says: “Getting back to work is a key milestone in people’s recovery.  It makes them feel stronger, healthier and that they are getting back in control.”

Unum head of public affairs John Letizia says: “This statement proves that income protection is about much more than just protecting people’s finances.  Mental health and musculoskeletal problems are the biggest causes of disability and sickness absence in the UK.  By supporting people when they fall ill, we can make a huge difference to their chances of getting back to work.  That is great for people and their families but also for the financial health of the UK economy.”