Approved by USC
As revised January 23, 2004
Approved by GUP and SEC, spring 2004
EVALUATION OF ABILITY TO WORK
This policy recognizes the fact
an employee’s a member of the academic staff’s
job performance or personal conduct may give reasonable cause to believe that a
physical or mental condition adversely affects the employee’s ability to perform
his or her job or poses a threat to the safety of the employee or others. This
policy attempts to establish the rights and obligations of both the employer and
employee a member of the academic staff in such situations, as
well as attending to the rights of those served by the University.
Problems and concerns covered
by this policy may fall under the provisions of the Americans with Disabilities
Act (ADA), but this policy is not confined to cases arising under the provisions
of that law. Whereas ADA covers only permanent disabilities substantially
limiting one or more of the major life activities of an individual, the intent
of this policy is to cover all types of impairment, including those that may be
of a temporary nature.
This policy is applicable to the academic staff of the University as defined at Article IX, Section 4(a) of the University of Illinois Statutes. This policy does not apply to the civil service staff nor does it cover matters falling under Workers Compensation, the Americans with Disabilities Act, or the handicap non-discrimination provisions of the Illinois Human Rights Act. Such matters should be processed under procedures consistent with their respective legal requirements.
III. Special Considerations for Faculty Members
Faculty members have a special status and rights stemming from the University’s Statutes, from the application of provisions for academic freedom, and from the role of faculty members in academic governance. This special status should not be compromised in the implementation of this policy. To the extent that there is an administrative interest in such a policy, it is the obligation of administrators to insure, for example, that there is a qualified faculty member teaching a course without disruption either to the education of students or to the academic activities of other faculty members.
IV. Rights and Obligations of
academic staff member shall incur no loss of pay or benefits while the
administrative evaluation process is underway until and unless official action
is taken to alter the employee’s academic staff member’s
2. Nothing in this policy
overrides rights provided to
employees academic staff by the
University’s Statutes or other applicable contracts or policies,
including the right to grieve or appeal the application of this policy under
applicable grievance procedures.
V. Rights and Obligations of Employer
1. The costs of the exams by the
health care providers designated by the University and the associated costs will
be borne by the University, and not by the
employee academic staff
2. If the outcome of the evaluation is Able to Work with Limitations (see Section VI. 3. below) the University shall make reasonable efforts to accommodate those limitations.
employee academic staff member of
the University may be required to be examined by appropriate licensed/certified
health care professional(s) designated by the University in order to determine
her/his ability to perform assigned duties and responsibilities.
Such an evaluation may be
required when the appropriate Vice Chancellor, in consultation with the unit
executive officer through appropriate reporting channels, determines that the
employee’s academic staff member’s job performance or personal
conduct gives reasonable cause to believe that a physical or mental condition
adversely affects the employee’s academic staff member’s ability
to perform his or her duties or poses a threat to the safety of the employee
academic staff member or others.
A unit executive officer may
request that this policy be invoked for a particular
of the academic staff by notifying, through the appropriate channels, the
Vice Chancellor in the academic staff member’s reporting line of the
facts suggesting a need for an administrative evaluation. The Vice Chancellor
shall review the request insuring that the unit executive officer has documented
1) that an ability to work problem may exist, 2) that the unit and the
employee academic staff member have been involved in efforts to
resolve the problem, and 3) that a satisfactory resolution has not been
achieved. Attempts must be made to resolve the problem at the level at which the
University employee academic staff member carries out his/her
primary professional duties, normally the unit in which he or she is appointed.
These procedures are not intended to prevent the employee academic
staff member or the unit executive officer from seeking other recourse as
provided by unit bylaws (if any) or University procedures.
If the Vice Chancellor concurs
that an evaluation is appropriate, the Vice Chancellor will appoint a
Coordinator for this process. In each case, the Coordinator and the
academic staff member being evaluated will be in the same employment
category (faculty , or academic professional , staff). The
process will be consistent with the rules of employment from that category. The
Coordinator will take the following steps:
a) Advise the unit administrator on the assembly and preparation of background documents necessary for the evaluation.
b) Inform the
academic staff member in writing that an administrative evaluation is being
required and provide information on the employee’s academic staff
member’s and employer’s rights and obligations under this policy.
c) Prepare a list of between three and five names of appropriate health-care professionals not affiliated with the University for the administrative evaluation process. The person to be evaluated, or in the event that the person is unable or unwilling, another person with legal authority to make health-care decisions for the person to be evaluated, shall select from the list the health-care professional(s) to perform the evaluation. If the person to be evaluated or his or her designee has not selected the health-care professional(s) to perform the evaluation within two weeks following receipt of the list of health-care professionals, the Coordinator will select the health-care professional(s) to perform the evaluation and inform the person to be evaluated of the selection.
d) Inform the
academic staff member of the time and place of the required evaluation.
e) Forward to the Vice
Chancellor, unit executive officer, and
employee academic staff member
a report specifying the focus, the method, the results and the conclusion of an
examination, relative to the employee’s academic staff member’s
ability to work. The results of a second evaluation may be provided at the
employee’s academic staff member’s expense.
3. Outcome of the Evaluation
The Vice Chancellor shall review all the materials and make the final determination as to the outcome of the administrative evaluation which will include one of the following: able to work without limitation; able to work with limitations; unable to work.
Able to work without
limitation: If the administrative evaluation determines that the
academic staff member is able to work without limitations, the
employee academic staff member and the unit will be notified by the
Able to work with
limitations: If the administrative evaluation determines that the
employee academic staff member is able to work with limitations, the
Coordinator will notify the employee academic staff member and
determine the conditions and requirements for continued employment in
consultation with the employee academic staff member and the
employing unit. Conditions may include continued treatment (and monitoring of
that treatment) and/or other arrangements as agreed to by the employee
academic staff member and Vice Chancellor. The administration will
consult and work with the unit regarding the workload implications of these
Unable to work: If the
administrative evaluation determines that the
employee academic staff
member is not able to work, the Coordinator will notify the unit and work
with the employee academic staff member as to her or his options,
which will include, but are not limited to, application for disability benefits
through SURS, leave of absence without pay, use of sick leave, resignation,
initiation of dismissal procedures, or other solutions which are agreeable to
the employee academic staff member and Vice Chancellor. The
administration will consult and work with the unit regarding the workload
implications of these decisions.
4. Return to Work
If the administrative
evaluation results in a finding that the
employee academic staff
member is not fit to work and the employee academic staff member
takes a leave of absence or uses sick leave, a follow-up evaluation will be
required to certify the employee’s academic staff member’s ability
to return to work.
5. Confidentiality and Access to Information
Reports and other information
about the evaluation and any follow-up treatments shall be kept by the
Coordinator and will not be included in the
employee’s academic staff
member’s personnel file. Upon written request, the employee
academic staff member may inspect report(s) by designated health-care
professional(s). The Coordinator will provide those in the employee’s
academic staff member’s reporting chain with only that information about the
employee’s academic staff member’s condition necessary for the
proper supervision of the employee academic staff member. In the
event of the initiation of an appeals process, the hearing group will be
provided access to any materials related to the evaluation with the agreement of
the employee academic staff member.
For questions about this policy, please call the
Office of Academic Human Resources (academic professional employees)
Office of Personnel Services (civil service employees) or the Office of the
Provost (faculty members).