Many employers say they make generous efforts to accommodate the needs of employees with breast cancer and other serious illnesses.[@@]

Researchers at the International Foundation of Employee Benefit Plans, Brookfield, Wis., have published data supporting that conclusion in a report on a survey of 1,082 benefit managers and human resource professionals who belong to the foundation.

Foundation managers tend to work for large, progressive employers, and only 123 of the survey recipients filled out the survey form.

But the researchers say 84% of the survey participants say they would offer reduced hours to workers suffering from serious illnesses such as breast cancer, and at least 70% would offer flexible schedules. Another 62% would offer extra breaks or rest periods.

Only 28% of the participants said their companies would allow job-sharing.

About 56% of the survey participants said their companies had run into actual cases of employees dealing with breast cancer.

Only 34% of the employees asked for an adjustment in their workload, but 97% needed periodic time off, 82% needed modifications of their work schedules, and 66% needed to take leaves of absence, according to the foundation researchers.