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Short-Term Disability
Apr 23, 2008

I work for a company that allows me to work from home 3 days per week. However, I have recently had surgery on both my knees. They have allowed me to work 5 days a week from home due to these surgeries. However, they do allow other employees to work from home full-time so it is not something that is unusual. However, my doctor has indicated at my last visit that I could return going into work for 2 days next week, but I am still having a problem with my knees and the left one in particular. My doctor has told me that I need knee replacements but I cannot afford to be off without pay during the time it takes to reocver from knee replacements. My company has put me on FMLA (even though I am still working)simply in case I am short a few hours here and there and to keep my insurance benefits in effect. However, they do not offer sick time or short-term disability, just long-term disability. As I take public transportation to and from work which is a 4 hour commute via bus/train (2 hours each way) I will be doing a lot of walking, climbing stairs, etc. and my knees will not be able to handle this. The doctor's office told me about short-term disability through the government, but I searched the internet and could not find this. I only found this benefit for persons who were already out of work because of their disability when I have been working throughout mine but wouldnt be able to do so if I would get knee replacements. I have told my doctor that I cannot go into work 2 days and finish my physical therapy. He does not want to extend allowing me to work from home 2 days a week because he is afraid of his reputation according to his assistant. I don't know what to do. Can you help me?

Response from Ms. Breuer

Is there an HIV connection that I don't see? We have to confine ourselves to HIV-related questions because of the daunting volume we receive. I recommend contacting the Job Accommodation Network, which specializes in questions such as yours.

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