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Accommodating Employees with Fibromyalgia

The following list of possible modifications for people with Fibromyalgia is provided by the U.S. Department of Labor’s Job Accommodation Network.

Concentration Issues:

  • Provide written job instructions when possible
  • Prioritize job assignments & provide more structure
  • Allow flexible work hours & allow a self-pace workload
  • Allow periodic rest periods to reorient
  • Provide memory aids, such as schedulers or organizers
  • Minimize distractions
  • Reduce job stress

Fine Motor Impairment:

  • Implement ergonomic workstation design
  • Provide alternative computer access
  • Provide alternative telephone access
  • Provide arm supports
  • Provide writing & grip aids
  • Provide a page turner & a book holder
  • Provide a note taker

Gross Motor Impairment:

  • Modify the work-site to make it accessible
  • Provide parking close to the work-site
  • Provide an accessible entrance
  • Install automatic door openers
  • Move workstation close to other work areas, office equipment, & break rooms

Temperature Sensitivity:

  • Modify work-site temperature & maintain the ventilation system
  • Modify dress code
  • Use fan/air-conditioner or heater at the workstation & redirect vents
  • Allow flexible scheduling & work from home during extremely hot or cold weather
  • Provide an office with separate temperature control

Skin Sensitivity:

  • Avoid infectious agents & chemicals
  • Provide protective clothing

Fatigue/Weakness:

  • Reduce or eliminate physical exertion & workplace stress
  • Schedule periodic rest breaks away from the workstation
  • Allow a flexible work schedule & flexible use of leave time
  • Allow work from home
  • Implement ergonomic workstation design

Depression & Anxiety:

  • Reduce distractions in work environment
  • Provide to-do lists & written instructions
  • Remind employee of important deadlines & meetings
  • Allow time off for counseling
  • Provide clear expectations of responsibilities & consequences
  • Provide sensitivity training to co-workers
  • Allow breaks to use stress management techniques
  • Develop strategies to deal with work problems before they arise
  • Allow telephone calls during work hours to doctors & others for support
  • Provide information on counseling & employee assistance programs

Sleep Disorder:

  • Allow flexible work hours & frequent breaks
  • Allow work from home

Migraine Headaches:

  • Provide task lighting
  • Eliminate fluorescent lighting
  • Use computer monitor glare guards
  • Reduce noise with sound absorbent baffles/partitions, environmental sound machines, & headsets
  • Provide alternate work space to reduce visual & auditory distractions
  • Implement a “fragrance-free” workplace policy
  • Provide air purification devices
  • Allow flexible work hours & work from home
  • Allow periodic rest breaks

 

Source: http://www.prohealth.com/fibromyalgia/fibromyalgia-work-and-disability