Managers and Supervisors Change in Ability to Work Resources

The university offers several resources to supervisors and managers when a faculty or staff member's ability to perform effectively at work has changed, possibly due to a physical or mental/emotional change.

University Human Resources (UHR)

Supervisors are encouraged to consult with their human resource representative regarding their responsibilities for providing reasonable accommodations.

U-M Office Of Institutional Equity — Americans With Disabilities Act (ADA) Coordinator

Phone: (734) 763-0235

TTY (734) 647-1388

Vist website

Requests for information or assistance regarding your responsibility as a supervisor or manager to make a reasonable accommodation for an employee may be addressed to the Office of Institutional Equity.

Workconnections

Phone: 734-615-0643

Visit website

WorkConnections is an integrated disability management program to assist faculty, staff and their supervisor when there is an illness or injury (personal or work-related) that results in an absence from work. The program will provide assistance through recovery and help facilitate return to work.

Return to Work Support

UMHS Employee Assistance Program (UMHS EAP):

Phone: (734) 763-5409

UMHS Employee Assistance Program

Faculty and Staff Assistance Program (FASAP):

  • Ann Arbor Campus Employees
  • Phone: (734) 936-8660
  • TTY (734) 647-1388
  • Flint Campus Employees
  • Phone: (734) 936-8660
  • TTY (734) 647-1388
  • Dearborn Campus Employees
  • Phone: (313) 593-5430

Faculty and Staff assistance Program

 

Returning to work after a medical leave can be challenging for many people. UMHS EAP and FASAP are available to help supervisors who may find it is difficult and/or awkward to transition employees back to work after a leave.

Physical Change — an example of how we've helped:

A university employee was experiencing progressively decreased vision and hearing. She began making computer and paperwork errors, was perceived as rude when she did not respond to verbal information and started coming to work late because she could no longer hear her alarm clock. Due to leaning forward all day to see the small computer fonts, she was increasingly uncomfortable in her back and neck. The employee met with a MHealthy occupational therapist (OT), who helped to identify the employee's job duties, and her related abilities and limitations. The OT also worked with the employee and her department to develop reasonable solutions and train her on using low-cost accommodations such as computer magnification and color options, paperwork magnifying lights, mirrors to see those approaching her from behind, and a vibrating alarm clock to use under her pillow. She was also encouraged to take ownership of her physical changes by asking for help when needed and helping co-workers understand how to effectively get her attention by gently tapping her on the shoulder. Today, she is a respected and valued member in the department.

Cognitive, Mental or Emotional Change — examples of how we've helped:

A university faculty member returned to work from a personal medical issue affecting the brain. Prior to leaving work, he was internationally and locally renowned and considered the "go-to" person in the department for faculty, staff and students. He had an open door policy and was known for a supportive, quick-to-help attitude. After returning to work, the faculty member was disorganized, forgot things, reported having physical discomfort at work, yelled when interrupted, and no longer got along well with colleagues or students. He began to feel increasingly depressed and anxious, and was in jeopardy of not being able to work any longer. He met with a MHealthy occupational therapist (OT), nurse case manager, and department representatives to identify job responsibilities, his abilities, and ways to overcome his new limitations. The nurse case manager coordinated medical issues with the physician, and the client participated in supportive counseling services. Through setting predictable office hours, limiting distractions in the office, setting up equipment more comfortably, and employing organized "To-Do" lists and schedules, he returned to receiving high praise and was successfully performing many of his job duties, including teaching, publishing, advising students, and international travel.

A university employee working as a custodian hurt her arm and transferred to a less physical job as an administrative assistant. However, in the new job, the employee was not meeting requirements in writing, communication skills, and reading and was considered disorganized. She was in jeopardy of losing her job, felt depressed about failing and her family was struggling to cope with her emotional distress. While the employee participated in supportive counseling services, she met with a MHealthy occupational therapist (OT), who helped to identify the effects of her reading/writing learning disability. These disabilities were not evident in the prior material handling position since it was more physical and repetitive. The employee and the OT, with the department's cooperation, tested accommodations and strategies in the clerical role, but they were not sufficient to meet the job demands. With help from Human Resources, the employee successfully transferred back to a material handling job within her medical restrictions and the OT coached her on safe work techniques, postures, and use of long-handled equipment.

Quotes from those We've Helped

"(The Occupational Therapist) was instrumental in helping us accommodate an employee who needed mobility assistance and another employee who, after having a stroke, had visual limitations. Without the assistance of the Occupational Therapist Work Rehab Services, (we) would have had difficulty accommodating the employees."