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Survey: Work integral to cancer patients’ well-being

published in The Oklahoman | June 28, 2017
Nathan Whatley
Nathan Whatley

In an article titled “Survey: Work integral to cancer patients’ well-being” featured in The Oklahoman, business writer Paula Burkes reported on several surveys of cancer patients that highlight the importance of work in their lives. While many patients cited finances and health insurance as their primary reason for continuing to work while undergoing treatment, a significant number said working assisted them in their recovery by making them feel “normal” and productive.

The article went on to say that although most cancer patients know that prospective employers are prohibited from discriminating against them based on their diagnosis, more than 35 percent believed that disclosing their diagnoses would either affect their chances or getting hired or affect the way prospective employers treated them.

McAfee & Taft labor and employment attorney Nathan Whatley, who was interviewed for the story, said that while employers are under no obligation to lower their standards for employees with cancer, they are required under the Americans with Disabilities Act to offer a reasonable accommodation, unless they can prove that doing so would create an undue hardship on their business operations. Common examples of accommodations include part-time or modified work schedules, he said.