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Employers Show Significant Confusion Regarding Migraine Disease in the Workplace – According to New Study by the HR Research Institute and Aimed Alliance

Migraine disease takes a heavy toll on employee well-being and productivity, but many organizations are still struggling with how best to manage employees suffering from the disease.

The free research report, The State of Migraine Disease in the Workplace 2021, is now available for download. HR.com’s Research Institute partnered with the not-for-profit health policy organization Aimed Alliance to investigate how employers perceive migraine disease, provide accommodations, and incorporate practices to help improve wellness and productivity.

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The research, based on a survey of human resources (HR) professionals, indicates that there is much confusion among managers when it comes to migraine disease. Despite the World Health Organization (WHO) finding that migraine disease is the sixth highest cause of disability worldwide, only about half (48%) of HR professionals think that migraine disease can be considered a disability. Migraine disease often carries stigma, particularly among direct supervisors. The stigma is apparent with the fact that 40% of participants indicate that some supervisors think that employees who report migraine attacks are “faking it” or “exaggerating.”

Employers have their work cut out for them as far as educating and informing their management about the disease and how to help their employees suffering from migraine attacks. Organizations that are better at managing employees with migraine disease are also more likely to view it as a possible disability.

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Only 56% of HR professionals agree or strongly agree that their organization does a good job of helping and accommodating employees with migraine disease. Only 1% of participants say migraine attacks do not impair employees’ ability to work, while many others say migraine attacks “always” (20%) and “sometimes” (66%) impair their work function.

“If not addressed well, migraine disease in the workplace can have an impact on a range of performance issues such as productivity, absenteeism, presenteeism, and more,” stated Debbie McGrath, Chief Instigator and CEO of HR.com.

Download the full report which includes key takeaways to help HR departments manage and develop migraine disease policies and best practices, including recommendations on accommodations, workplace wellness programs, and health benefits, to protect their employees and their organizations and improve productivity in the workplace.

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