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January 2024

Supporting employees with terminal illness: a guide to workplace policies and practice

Supporting employees with terminal illness
In partnership with

What does this guide cover?

This guide is designed to provide insights and information that you can use to develop policy and recommendations that are aligned to your particular organisation and employees.

It sets out the most important things you should think about, including:

  • What people working with a terminal illness tell us about their experience and needs at work;
  • What managers need to know, and how to support them in their role;
  • How to build a positive and compassionate working culture around terminal illness;
  • How to make the case for a dedicated policy to directors or trustees.

The guide has been developed in collaboration with HR leads and occupational health professionals from across different sectors and workplaces, including local authorities, universities, hospitals, charities, retail chains, broadcasting companies and others. It also draws on contributions of those with a terminal illness, who have shared their experiences – positive and negative – of work after a diagnosis.

It is an introduction to the topic, rather than a comprehensive set of instructions given the current lack of strong evidence on ‘what works’ to most effectively support employees with a terminal illness.

Close What does this guide cover?

What to include in a terminal illness policy

Three principles for effective action

Is this guide for me?

What do we mean by 'terminal illness'?

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