Magazine article Personnel Journal

When AIDS Dementia Complex Strikes Your Employee

Magazine article Personnel Journal

When AIDS Dementia Complex Strikes Your Employee

Article excerpt

AIDS Dementia Complex is the result of the direct assault of the AIDS virus on the brain and manifests as the deterioration of memory. This debilitating disorder affects job performance because the person suffering from it no longer can remember important data for fulfilling the essential functions of the job.

Employers who must face the tragedy of an employee with AIDS Dementia Complex can learn from the experience of The Prudential Co., which recently helped a worker with the disorder smoothly transition to disability leave and his co-workers return to normal productivity. The Woodland Hills, California-based company suggests:

* Provide immediate, targeted workplace AIDS education for co-workers. The Prudential's seminar occurred within a week of personnel manager Virginia Fleming's assessment of the situation and focused on the effects of dementia. The employee, Andy, gave permission for his diagnosis to be disclosed so that the seminar would be most effective.

* Bring together, if possible, the affected employee and his or her closest support person outside the company, the employee's supervisor, a few close co-workers and a qualified facilitator to process the emotions built up over the weeks or months of the employee's deterioration.

* Explain the company's benefits to the affected employee and his or her closest support person, then oversee the delivery of those benefits. Andy needed help completing the forms that bridged his working life and his disability. With help from his supervisor and personnel, he was able to take advantage of The Prudential's Living Need provision of their group life-insurance policy. …

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