How does Employment Law in Ghana handle long term illness?

Senyo Adjabeng / No Comments

Blog post: 001-18

Basically the law does not account for long term illness so it is best handled by a good absence from work policy in general and then long term illness in particular.

The Labour law deals with “sick leave” subject to a medical certificate from a certified medical practitioner. It does not specify duration and does not clarify circumstances and conditions under which such leave shall be given.

General practice for long term illness is for a sick employee to be covered by a medical excuse duty to be absent from work for a limited duration after which medical absence may be extended for another limited period on a reduced salary.

Where employee does not recover after such extension, the employee is made to undergo a medical ‘board’ which is actually an occupational health examination for fitness for work.

If results come out…employee may be given two remedies.

1. Given lighter duty on same salary or sometimes revised employment contract terms and so a lower salary, or

2. Terminated on ground of ill health under section 15 and 62 of the Labour law Act 651.

Where the employee challenges the occupational health exam results, s/he may seek independent medical consultation leading to the mutual selection of a third senior medical practitioner to examine results and conduct further test to make a final occupational health determination for fitness for work.

The good practice however as gleaned from the UK, US, Newzealand and Australia is to have a capped medical absence after which a fitness for work exam is conducted and results implemented accordingly.


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