Whether creating a workplace migraine management program from scratch or incorporating information about migraines into existing health and wellness programs, effective communications are a critical component of success. Since migraines are often misunderstood and not discussed in the workplace, what you communicate is as important as the communication channels you choose. Using strategic, thoughtful communications can create an open work environment where employees are aware of the seriousness of migraines and feel comfortable talking about the condition – especially those suffering from migraine.
In a recent survey, more than 1,000 Americans were asked if they agreed or disagreed that individuals with migraines are stigmatized because of their condition and more than half of migraineurs agreed, along with just 30% of non-sufferers. At the most basic level, effective communications can help decrease this migraine-associated stigma among co-workers by increasing migraine awareness in the workplace.
A more comprehensive targeted communications strategy will go beyond awareness, educating employees, managers and supervisors on topics such as diagnosing and treating migraines and practicing self-care to prevent or better manage the condition. This type of information will often be part of a larger employee migraine management program and communications will include promoting program elements as well.