Time off for medical appointments and tests

Normally doctor’s appointments, including appointments for tests, are taken on a person’s own time. 

  • When possible, employees are expected to schedule their medical appointments including any required treatment or therapy outside of work hours.
  • If not possible and appointments have to be scheduled during work time, the scheduling should be as close as possible to the beginning/end of the morning/afternoon in order to minimize the impact to the department. (Please refer to your department’s protocol/guidelines on time off for appointments).
  • Time taken during the work day for appointments or treatment is normally expected to be made up. Canadian Union of Public Employees (CUPE) Local 793 employees - please follow the union contract agreement.

In some circumstances however, these appointments may be recorded as either sick leave or as work time.

When sick leave may be applicable for a medical test/procedure:

  • If you have a scheduled appointment for a procedure that requires preparation and/or the day off, medical should be provided by way of a doctor's note, or the completion of the Sick Leave/Return to Work Form (PDF) to support the time needed for the medical test to the Disability Management Team. It will be reviewed and verified by Occupational Health to determine if time should be recorded as sick leave.
  • A medical appointment that relates to the illness during the ramp-up period of a return to work plan after extended sick leave or LTD (i.e. physiotherapy).
  • If necessary, ramp-up hours can be worked around the appointment; if that is not possible however, the whole day is recorded as a sick day.

Sick leave during layoff periods (CUPE only)

Sick leave and LTD are not payable during layoff although the qualifying period for LTD can be met during a layoff period. Sick leave benefits do not accrue during periods of layoff. 

If an employee is receiving sick leave prior to a layoff, sick leave pay ends at the time on the layoff effective date. If illness prevents a return to work on the permanent recall effective date, any remaining sick leave is payable followed by eligible LTD benefit payments.

The Disability Management Team must be contacted in situations when the employee is ill prior, during or recalled from a period of layoff.


  • If an employee is laid off but due to work demands or seniority is recalled sick leave would normally apply.
  • If an employee becomes ill while on layoff, sick leave is not payable. If the employee continues to be ill at the permanent recall date, any remaining sick leave is payable at that time.
  • If an employee is laid off and is recalled for a temporary period of time but is unable to return for the temporary period due to illness, the employee is not eligible for sick leave.
  • If the employee is called back temporarily and becomes unable to work due to illness, the employee is eligible to use available sick leave benefits for the duration of the temporary recall period.
  • If the permanent recall date arrives and a return to work is not possible due to illness, remaining sick leave benefits or LTD are payable.

Absence longer than one year

Staff and Canadian Union of Public Employees 793 positions are kept open for one year from the first date absent (note - absences due to workplace injury are governed by Workplace Safety and Insurance Bureau legislation).

If, at the one year timeframe, a return is not imminent (imminent defined as within the following two months), departments are permitted to fill the position and any outstanding vacation owed to the employee will be paid at that time.

Disability Management Team contacts:

  • Disability Benefits Specialist - Nellie Gomes, Human Resources (ext. 42926)

  • Occupational health nurses

  • Safety/Workplace Safety and Insurance Board (WSIB) Officer – Andrew Scheifele, Safety Office (ext. 36359)