A major challenge for society

In the world of work, more and more workers are affected by cancer. Every day in France, 1,000 people, of which 400 have jobs, learn that they have cancer. If the numbers seem pessimistic  initially, they are, in fact, the opposite – they reflect early diagnosis, more effective and less invasive treatment, associated with a reduction in the age of retirement. For 25 years, the mortality rate of cancer has been constantly diminishing .

For people affected by cancer, retaining and returning to work are, therefore, a major societal issue. If the cancer has an impact on one’s personal life, it has no less of an impact on one’s professional life. Five years after the diagnosis of cancer, 63.5% of people suffer from the after-effects of the illness or the treatment (tiredness, anxiety and depression…), which can have an impact on their work ,and 20% have lost their job, especially the less qualified, the over 50s, and those who have an insecure contract .

The return to work is an important factor and it is recognised when supporting a person with cancer. It influences both quality of life, financial security and maintaining a stable social environment . It is essential to accompany patients in their return to, and retention of, employment, be it for employees, managers, or collaborators .

Returning to work after cancer: ReWork programme & testimonials

Development of a network for the return to, and the retention of, work in the Pays de la Loire

Retaining and returning to work is a major societal issue for people with cancer, so from this stemmed the idea to create a network for the return to, and  retention of, employment in the Pays de la Loire region.

This network is the result of the research led by Yves Roquelaure, in the framework of programme 3  ” ReWork-QoL (Quality Of Life And Sustainable Return to Work) “.

The objectives of the network are to improve quality of life and to promote social and professional reintegration, or retention, of employment for people with cancer. In this way, the network aims to bring together and coordinate all the actors in returning and retaining work, so they can work better together, in contact with GPs and hospital practitioners. Moreover, the network proposes training , educational material and also webconferences and MOOCs for all the players involved in keeping people employed, including the patients themselves.

Information for the business community, written by the “Cancer and Employment” Business Club of the French National Cancer Institute:

  • 5 stories for managers
  • Words and attitudes towards the disease
  • Cancer and employment: evaluating your actions

They are available on the INCa website.

Scientific Publications on the topic


Anticipating a return to work: A brochure aimed at the patients

Elaborated with the support of Europa Donna and intended for breast cancer patients, this brochure has the aim of helping the patient get back to their job after sick leave following their cancer.

You can find, among other things, professional resources and also systems that can help you get back to your professional activity. Organised around professional statuses (private employee, self-employed , public agent…), this brochure will also provide you with the key to calmly address the steps of your return to work .

To download it, click here.

You can also read our news by clicking here.

“Cancer and Work” Guide

Today, nearly one third of multiple myeloma patients are of working age when diagnosed with the disease.

This guide was designed and developed in partnership between AF3M and SIRIC ILIAD, with the aim of presenting where to find help, who to contact, in order to return to work following cancer.

To download it, click here.

You can also read our news by clicking here.

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