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Woman going back to work thanks to Return To Work assistance programme

Published on 27/05/2020


Return To Work: a success story


Amidst the current outbreak of coronavirus (COVID-19), stress is often a daily occurrence, which explains why some people dread going back to work. Now more than ever, employee wellbeing is a critical issue. The AG’s Return To Work assistance programme helps your staff members on long-term sick leave back to work safely and successful. Find out the status three years after the launch.​


Staff members with a stress-related disorder require specialised care. Unfortunately, this type of treatment is quite fragmented, with long waiting times. Which is why AG offers proactive, individually tailored as​sistance.
The Return To Work assistance programme provides targeted guidance to get staff members with a stress-related condition (e.g. burnout syndrome) fit for active duty again. We have been offering this service as an integral part of our In​come Care coverage since 2017.

In addition, our assistance programme is specifically designed to pick up where the new regulatory return-to-work measures leave off. For stress-related conditions, the statutory programme falls short in two essential areas: treatment and the time factor. And this is where AG’s assistance programme fills in the gaps.

"Specialised treatment is just what staff members afflicted with burnout syndrome need! And it’s exactly what we deliver…"

(Dr. Pia Cox, Medical Manager)

Once the sick leave has been reported, it can take between one and three months for the start phase, and the average duration of a programme is five months. Participation is on a purely voluntary basis. In other words, your staff member will always receive the offer but may accept or refuse to participate in the programme at any time.

Status three years after the launch

Since the initial launch in 2017, our return-to-work programme has been hugely successful. The number of programmes has doubled each year to reach a grand total of 2,115 in three years. This result also reflects the growing interest in Income Care income protection insurance.  

Our Return To Work service clearly meets the needs of our participants. 72% of assistance programmes are successful. In practical terms, a staff member on long-term sick leave for a stress-related disorder will be back in the workplace after six to eight months. This is a major achievement, as past history has shown that 50 % of staff members on sick leave due to a mental disorder are still not well enough to return to work two years later.

Some testimonials

​Curious about what other HR managers have to say about our service? Watch their testimonials about our return-to-work assistance programme.​

Want to get to know Return To Work better?

Income protection insurance, an essential employee benefit 

As said, the success of Return To Work is also due to the growing interest in an income protection insurance. Research conducted by Vlerick Business School and AG shows that income protection insurance is one of the most highly valued fringe benefits among staff members. Over 90% of employees members surveyed wi​sh that their company would include income protection insurance in their salary package. 

Want to find out more? Take the quiz on occupational incapacity and download the complete research report​.​