A "Work, health and disability" green paper has been published by the Department of Work and Pensions as part of a plan to overhaul the current GP fit note, sick pay and other disability schemes, with the aim of helping those on long-term sick leave to get back to work.
The current system has been described by Work and Pensions Secretary, Damian Green, as "broken", with employers being frustrated at the manner in which the "Statement for Fitness for Work" - known as the fit note - are completed by GP's, and their apparent reluctance to support the option of the phased return to work.
The fit note, introduced the "may be fit for work" option and the form contain tick boxes for adjustments that could be made to allow a partial return to work, such as altered hours or amended duties.
The review of the fit note and payment of statutory sick pay will form part of the consultation announced.
Ministers said statutory sick pay will be reviewed to encourage supportive conversations between employers and employees, and support phased returns to work.