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Disclosing Your Condition To Co-Workers

What If A Problem Arises With A Co-Worker?

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If a problem arises with a co-worker, try to resolve it face-to-face. Perhaps all the person needs is education, such as:

  • Education about your health condition. Many diseases are a rumor filled mystery to people. A little education can dispel the myths.
  • That your condition cannot be transmitted at work so the co-worker doesn't have to fear. If your condition is transmittable, point out all the steps that are being taken to be sure that it doesn't happen. For instance, the odds of transmitting HIV in the normal workplace are almost infinitesimal. Even in a risky setting like a surgical room, precautions can be taken.

If a talk doesn't work, get help. Talk with the Human Resources department or with your manager. This isn't personal -- it's a work issue.

If the problem rises to the level of harassment, you may be protected under the Americans With Disability Act. If so, follow the steps described in the article: Discrimination.

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