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Local HR manages employees’ absence through illness together with NSSO. NSSO monitors self-certified sick leave and long-term absences and will take appropriate measures over excessive absenteeism. Local HR should forward all CMO referrals directly to the Chief Medical Officer.

NSSO will continuously monitor the absence of individuals using the sick absence thresholds outlined in the relevant circulars. Local HR will make decisions about whether employees should be taken off pay or placed on pension rate of pay.

Local HR’s role in the absence process

Notifying of absence

Managers must inform NSSO if an employee is absent from work. If NSSO receive medical certificates and have not been informed of the absence, NSSO will inform Local HR, who must contact the employee’s manager and ask for the unscheduled absence form.

Referrals to the Chief Medical Officer (CMO)

NSSO will initiate CMO referrals for absences that meet a referral threshold but will require Local HR to forward the referral directly to the CMO. Local HR may initiate a CMO referral for certain scenarios such as, for example, discounting days. LHR will create a case on CMS and reference the case number on the referral form which they will forward directly to the CMO with any supporting information.

Outcome reports on CMO referrals will issue to Local HR and Local HR must inform the employee of the outcome. The CMO’s Office will inform NSSO that a report has been issued.

Pay affected

NSSO will monitor employees who are approaching pay affected threshold i.e. 92 absent days or 183 absent days. If an employee reaches 92 days, NSSO will instruct the salaries section that the person should go on half-pay.

If the employee is approaching 183 days, Local HR will be asked to decide whether the person should be put on the pension rate of pay or no pay. If Local HR instruct that the person should go on pension rate of pay, NSSO will calculate the pension rate of pay and instruct salaries. Please note that if a calculation has been made in the previous six months for the employee, this is the figure that will be used.

Note: NSSO may contact local HR for further clarifications on absence cases. This will happen on a case-by-case basis.

Supporting Information

Circular 16/2012 – Self Certified Sick Leave

Circular 09/2010 – Management of Sick Leave

Circular 9/2004- Sick Leave and the Organisation of Working Time Act 1997

Sick Leave in the Civil Service