Statements On Endometriosis Amendment To Pass House 7302020
“When former First Lady Betty Ford publicly discussed her breast cancer, a taboo subject at the time, the increase in awareness and timely detection led to a steep drop in mortality. When Padma Lakshmi publicly discussed her endometriosis ten years ago, she launched the same worldwide awareness about a taboo topic and has already helped countless women get diagnosed and properly treated.Padma Laksmi is the ‘first lady’ of endometriosis. I thank her, always, for her courage and leadership in discussing taboo subjects such as menstruation. Awareness leads to early diagnosis and timely intervention that will save so many women from living in agony, losing organs, and losing their quality of life. Thank you, Congresswoman Finkenauer, and those on the Endometriosis Caucus for championing this cause. With your support, we can achieve the same success in endometriosis and change the future of American women’s health.” Tamer Seckin, MD, FACOG, ACGE Co-founder, Endometriosis Foundation of America, Seckin Endometriosis Center, Lenox Hill Hospital.
Endometriosis is a very common yet under-recognized disease. It can cause tremendous pain and disability. Funding for endometriosis will go a long way to help the millions of affected women.Hugh S. Taylor, M.D., Anita OKeeffe Professor of Womens Health and Chair, Department of Obstetrics, Gynecology and Reproductive Sciences, Yale School of Medicine, Chief of Obstetrics and Gynecology, Yale-New Haven Hospital
I Had A 7 Year Wait For Diagnosis From My Referral To The Hospital I Had A Year And A Half Wait For Surgery I Was In Constant Pain Slept For 3 Or 4 Hours A Day And Was Unable To Care For My Son Properly I Considered Putting Him Into Care If It Wasn’t For Him I Would Have Given Up On Everything
Kathryn was writing in response to a social media post from the House of Commons calling for public contributions to a Parliamentary debate. We will return to her story later on.
The MP leading the debate wanted to hear from those living with endometriosis, specifically:
- about their experiences of diagnosis
- what their workplaces had done to support them.
Have you been diagnosed with #endometriosis?How supportive is your workplace? On 29 October, will lead a debate on endometriosis and he wants to hear about your experiences. Click the image to share your story.Deadline: 12pm, 28 October.
Alec Shelbrooke MP
What Can Your Business Do
- First and foremost, take women’s health seriously. The World Health Organization estimates that endometriosis affects 10 percent of women. It’s a chronic condition where tissue similar to your uterine lining grows on other organs. It can cause extreme pain and infertility. And that’s only one of the many reproductive system problems that your female employees face. If you’re not talking about the problems, you can’t find the solution.
- Keep flexibility in mind. While endometriosis can cause incredible pain, making it impossible to work at all, sometimes allowing women to work from home as needed can help them keep going.
- Make sure you have a good sick-time policy. Until a doctor’s diagnosis and paperwork are filled out and approved, there’s no legal protection for needed accommodations or time off. Make sure your policy allows for time off so that everyone can get the time they need to keep their health in top shape.
- Remember your employees who can’t work at home. If the pandemic taught us anything, it’s that many essential jobs have to be done in person. A school teacher, grocery store cashier, or electrician cannot work from home. Don’t make a policy that only benefits your office personnel. Think of those women who have to show up and be on their feet while struggling with endometriosis.
Be willing to work with women and make adjustments as needed. A little compassion can go a long way.
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Appealing A Disability Application Rejection
It takes an average of three to five months to process an application for disability benefits. Approval can take even longer.
Only 21 percent of those who applied for disability benefits between 2009 and 2018 were approved on their first attempt. You can appeal the decision if your application is denied. Don’t get discouraged and just remember: When you’re approved, you get back pay, a MyEndometriosisTeam member recommended.
The first step is reconsideration, when your case will be evaluated by someone who did not take part in the first evaluation. About 2 percent of applications that werent approved the first time were approved during reconsideration from 2009 through 2018.
If necessary, you have the option of filing a second appeal, which includes a hearing by an administrative law judge trained in disability laws. You may have a disability attorney represent you at this hearing. Some law firms specialize in disability hearings. In most cases, these disability lawyers do not require a set, upfront payment rather, they will take a percentage of any benefits you do receive.
If you are denied at this level, you can ask the Appeals Council to review your case and make a decision on it. About 8 percent of SSDI claims between 2009 and 2018 were approved during a hearing with an administrative law judge or the Appeals Council. If you are denied at this level, the only remaining option is a federal court hearing.
Veterans Disability Rating Criteria On Endometriosis
Historically women serving in the United States military have begun taking on more diversified roles while at the same time accomplishing prestige rank barriers in all branches of the armed forces. Due to the recent conflicts such as the War in Iraq and Afghanistan women in the military have been have put on longer deployment periods and prolong war zone exposure, to which this has increased their risk of deliberating service connected medical conditions. Approximately 50% of female veterans who have served on active duty military status will be diagnosed with at least one gynecological medical condition. Endometriosis is one of the most common female reproductive conditions that veterans are initially diagnosed while on active duty military service. This condition is predominantly a panful disorder that happens when the lining of the uterus grows outside of the uterus. Symptoms of endometriosis include abnormal bleeding, worsening menstrual cramps, chronic pain in the lower back and pelvis, digestive complications, and infertility. The severity level of female veterans being diagnosed with endometriosis while on active duty is imperative simply because the effects of this condition can cause a plethoric of surgical procedures and residual complications as well. The Department of Veterans Affairs disability compensation rating criteria on endometriosis indicates the following:
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How To Prevent Endometriosis Or The ‘career Woman’s Disease’ From Holding Back Your Staff
Endometriosis used to be called the “Career Woman’s Disease,” but it turns out that what it is is a career damaging disease. A study in Finland found that women with endometriosis took 10 more sick days and 10 more disability days than their non-afflicted counterparts.
Clare-Louise Knox, founder of See Her Thrive, an organization dedicated to making women’s health “normal,” asks, “I wonder how many of these women found themselves in a disciplinary meeting for endo-related sickness absence?”
It’s an excellent question. While endometriosis can qualify you for intermittent leave under FMLA or time off under the Americans with Disabilities Act, both of those require paperwork from your doctor. And it takes, on average, 10 doctor visits before an afflicted woman gets a diagnosis. In other words, without paperwork, there is no protection, and without protection, you can find yourself in a disciplinary meeting discussing your high level of absenteeism.
Even with the proper paperwork on file, Knox adds, “Let’s not forget, we live in a world that penalizes employees who are forced to take time off work to manage a chronic health condition.”
Tips For Talking About Health Conditions At Work
Some employers and managers are ill-equipped for difficult conversations others may be supportive but don’t have the experience, training or resources to help.
“Disclosure of medical information is a sensitive topic, and must be approached by employers delicately, and employees need to know they’re in a safe setting,” Ms Bytheway says.
Sarah says it can help to have a good idea around what would help, whether it’s additional flexibility, time off or changes to your work environment.
“I would encourage people to think about what you actually need and think about how you can articulate that to your workplace,” Sarah adds.
“You might say, ‘Here is something I live with. Here’s what I need to be my best self at work, and here’s a contingency plan for when I’m unwell.’
“I’d also say don’t apologise. In a lot of ways, it’s no different to a parent who needs to look after their children, someone experiencing mental health challenges or someone caring for a sick parent.”
Here’s a short summary of steps that can help you navigate the conversation:
Work with your manager to develop solutions. Agree on a way forward.
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How Workplace Flexibility Can Help People With Chronic Health Issues Or Disability
Naomi Fitzgerald de Grave, 36, is a stylist working in Sydney. Like Sarah, she’s been dealing with endometriosis for much of her life.
It interrupted her career as a model and was a major factor in her decision to leave a career as a flight attendant.
These days, Naomi has opted for a more flexible working schedule which allows her to better manage her health.
“Endometriosis has made me take a different approach to life, and a different perspective. It’s be kinder to myself,” she says.
“In business, people want the workhorses and that wasn’t viable for me.
“I choose now to have a better work-life balance. Before I used to allow my work to consume me. I’ve really stepped back, and I choose to only work three to four days a week.”
But it’s come at a cost. While many of Naomi’s friends have settled down and bought apartments, she says most of her money has gone to medical bills.
“I wish I could have had those things, but you’ve got to be kind on yourself, and say, ‘Well, this is what I have, and I’m lucky,'” she says.
Flexibility is also a major concern for Sarah. Around the time she was diagnosed with endometriosis, she also suffered a series of concussions that still affect her to this day.
She took nine months off work, and wasn’t sure if she’d ever be able to work full time again.
But then she got a new job as a diversity and inclusion manager at a professional services firm, and it was accommodating from the start.
We Assess General Medical Rules
We assess if your condition is fully diagnosed, treated and stabilised and unlikely to improve with further treatment.
We check if the impact of your condition:
- will last more than 2 years
- rates at least 20 points on the Impairment Tables
- will stop you working at least 15 hours a week in the next 2 years, even with training.
We also check if you meet Program of Support rules, if these apply to you.
We may talk to your treating doctors and other health professionals about your medical evidence.
If you dont meet either the manifest or general medical rules, youre not medically eligible. This means you cant get DSP. You may be able to get other payments.
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Work And Endometriosis: Legal Issues
Guest Feature by Laurie Smith, Attorney-at-Law
Some of us who suffer from endometriosis and have a job outside the home know all too well how many days each month we have to force ourselves to get out of bed and go to work. Many times, that effort is motivated by the fear that we will lose our jobs if we use too many sick days because of endometriosis problems.
Over the past decade, a number of laws have been enacted that purport to protect the rights of workers with ongoing disabilities. The basis of many of these laws has been to provide the worker with a defense in the face of the “at-will” employment laws in effect in many states.
“At-will” employment basically means that, unless you have a contract that states otherwise, an employer can terminate an employee for any reason at any time. Obviously, those of us with endometriosis who may be absent from work more often than the average worker are certainly at risk to be the victim of the employers will.
Probably the most publicized and litigated law designed to protect the worker with disabilities is the Americans with Disabilities Act, known as the ADA. While the ADA was originally passed with the intent of providing access and employment opportunities to the physically and mentally handicapped, it has since been extended to cover most physical ailments as well.
The ADA defines “disability” as any one of the following three categories:
The Employer’s Obligations Under the ADA
Limitations of the ADA
We Let You Know The Result Of Your Claim
We assess if you can get DSP and let you know the result of your claim. We’ll send a letter to explain our decision to your preferred type of communication. This could be one of the following:
- Express Plus Centrelink mobile app
- a letter in the mail.
If you dont meet all the medical and non-medical rules well reject your claim. If we reject your claim, we will try to call you to explain why. Well also write to you. You need to keep your contact details up to date so we can contact you.
One of our Service Officers will call you to explain:
- the reason for our decision
- your options if you dont agree with our decision.
We can also provide referrals to other services such as Disability Employment Services if youre eligible.
If you are still unsure, you can contact us to ask for more information about our assessment, including:
- a copy of your medical assessment
- why you dont meet DSP eligibility.
If you think weve made a mistake you can ask us to review our decision.
If you get DSP, youll need to meet your obligations to keep getting the payment. Read more about how to manage your payment.
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How To Qualify With Endometrial Cancer
Endometrial Cancer is also found in Blue Book Section 13.23. Under this listing, there are three ways to qualify:
- The cancer has invaded adjoining organs
- The cancer has spread beyond regional lymph nodes
- Cancer has returned despite anticancer therapies
For any form of cancer, youll always qualify if your cancer has returned despite treatment , has spread to another organ, or is inoperable/untreatable.
The entire Blue Book is available online, so you can review the cancer listings to get a better idea as to whether or not youll qualify for benefits.
Relevant Questions Answers Mentions And Consultations Since The Debate
Endometriosis has been raised by MPs several times in the House of Commons Chamber since the last debate:
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Find other examples by searching Hansard – the official report of all parliamentary debates.
Find other examples by searching Hansard – the official report of all parliamentary debates.
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How To Move: With Endometriosis
Regular exercise may help reduce the pain, inflammation and risk of getting endometriosis, say experts. But here are some things to consider
- In the How to move series, experts offer advice on exercising without exacerbating pain and fatigue
More than 830,000, or around one in nine, Australian women suffer from endometriosis, a condition that can cause debilitating pain during the menstrual cycle as well as during ovulation, sex, urination and bowel movements. Other symptoms include inflammation, bloating, heavy bleeding and fatigue, and it can affect fertility.
The pain and discomfort can lead women to restrict exercise but this can create other chronic health problems, says accredited exercise physiologist Dr Angela Spence from Curtin University. Physical activity can also have myriad benefits.
Regular exercise is associated with reduced risk of developing endometriosis, she explains, and can also directly help reduce the inflammation associated with the condition. Other potential benefits include pain management, improved mental health and mitigation of side effects from commonly prescribed medications.
Spence notes that more research is needed to give conclusive support for the role of exercise in managing endometriosis. But considering the benefits, experts have several general recommendations with some provisos.
What Are The Symptoms Of Endometriosis
Symptoms of endometriosis can include:
- Pain. This is the most common symptom. Women with endometriosis may have many different kinds of pain. These include:
- Very painful menstrual cramps. The pain may get worse over time.
- Chronic pain in the lower back and pelvis
- Pain during or after sex. This is usually described as a “deep” pain and is different from pain felt at the entrance to the vagina when penetration begins.
- Intestinal pain
- Painful bowel movements or pain when urinating during menstrual periods. In rare cases, you may also find blood in your stool or urine.
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