Workplace health: long-term sickness absence and capability to work : guidance (NG146)

National Institute for Health and Care Excellence - NICE
Publication date:
20 November 2019


This guideline covers how to help people return to work after long-term sickness absence, reduce recurring sickness absence, and help prevent people moving from short-term to long-term sickness absence.

NICE has also produced a guideline on workplace health: management practices.


This guideline includes new and updated recommendations on:

It also includes recommendations on:

Who is it for?

  • Employers' representatives including managers, human resource professionals and occupational health professionals
  • GPs and secondary care specialists
  • Employees and their workplace representatives
  • Commissioners of advice and support services for people who are not in work and are receiving benefits because of their health or a disability, and users of these services

Guideline development process

How we develop NICE guidelines

NICE worked with Public Health England to develop this guidance.

This guideline updates and replaces NICE guideline PH19 (March 2009).