Roles and Responsibilities While on Medical Leave

We are accountable for taking responsibility for our own health and well-being, however, we may experience an illness/injury which requires us to be away from work for a time. Should this occur, if you have been on medical leave and absent from duties for twenty (20) days or if you expect that the medical leave will result in an absence of more than twenty (20) days your responsibilities as a staff member are to:

  • Notify your Department Chair (or designate) of your absence immediately and your expected duration of your absence.
  • Maintain contact with your Manager during your absence and update your Manager as to your prognosis for recovery and expected return to work.

As a University of Alberta staff member, during a Medical Leave you are eligible for health recovery and return to work support services from Homewood Health Inc. (HHI) and HRS/Organizational Development, Equity and Health (ODEH).

There are many benefits to accessing the support of a HHI Health Support Consultant (HSC). Your HHI Health Support Consultant (HSC) can coordinate and often expedite access to rehabilitative, diagnostic and assessment services sooner than a physician referral. When working with an HSC, many of these costs may be covered by the University. Further, by developing a return to work plan with the ODEH Return to Work Consultant based on medical recommendations, your medical leave can be extended out beyond 26 weeks by the amount of work that is being undertaken during a medical leave.

Once you provide notification from your doctor for Medical Leave, an HSC will contact you to support you in your recovery. The HSC will work with you, your manager, the ODEH Return to Work Consultant (RTWC) and your health care provider(s) to facilitate your healthy and safe return to work with the University of Alberta.

Our goal is to support you in identifying the best resources and access to rehabilitative or other services and to assist you in a safe, healthy, productive and sustainable return to work.

To participate in this program:

  • Download and have your treating physician complete the Medical Certificate form and provide to HHI. Your physician's office may fax the Medical Certificate form directly to HHI at 780-429-1747.
  • The University of Alberta will cover the costs of the Medical Certificate reporting fee. Please have your doctor's office fax their invoice directly to HHI at 780-429-1747.
  • Please note that the University's Information and Privacy Office (IPO) does not recommend that medical information be sent by email. For more information about the risks of sending medical and other personal information by email and the alternative ways of sending information suggested by the IPO, please see Email Best Practices. Please consider these risks and alternatives when you share medical and other personal information in the course of accessing services and resources to assist with your illness, injury or disability.
  • Actively participate in your recovery by collaborating with your treatment providers and your HHI Case Coordinator who will assist both you and your treatment team in identifying the best resources and access to rehabilitative or other services.
  • Attend appointments with specialists and rehabilitation providers as arranged and following all usual and customary treatment/activities recommended by care providers.
  • Maintain contact with and respond to your Manager and HHI's Health Support Consultant throughout your leave.
  • Continue to provide objective medical information throughout the duration of your illness.
  • Advise your Manager and ODEH Return to Work Consultant (RTWC) when you are deemed able to return to full or modified or alternate duties/hours.
  • Engage in return-to-work discussions with your Manager and RTWC on alternatives that will support a timely and sustainable return to work.
  • Participate in modified or alternate work assignments within any limitations/restrictions approved by a physician.
  • Consult with your Association Representative if you have concerns with your ability to effectively represent yourself.
  • Advise your RTWC and Supervisor/Manager of any problems associated with a modified or alternate work assignment. Advise your supervisor/manager in advance of planned absences such as scheduled surgery, as soon as you become aware.
  • If you have experienced an injury while at work, follow the procedures for reporting a workplace injury on the HRS website WCB Reporting