- Catastrophic medical leave may be granted for a maximum of four weeks (i.e., 20 work days, exclusive of any university holiday) during any 12-month period and will only be granted as consecutive, full days.
- It cannot be approved as intermittent leave (e.g., every other day off) or under a reduced work schedule arrangement (e.g., just working four hours daily).
- Employees on an approved catastrophic medical leave will also be paid for any university holiday that occurs during the approved period of the catastrophic medical leave. The holiday will not count as a day in the approved catastrophic medical leave period.
- Employees on an approved catastrophic medical leave will continue to receive their salary, and all of the fringe benefits available to full-time, regular employees will be continued.
- The monthly premiums for all voluntary or supplemental benefits (e.g., family medical, family dental, dependent life insurance, supplemental life insurance) elected by the employee will be paid through the regular payroll deduction method.
- Catastrophic medical leave will count toward the allowable period of Family and Medical Leave as delineated in Section 7.7 of this handbook. Availability of allowable Family and Medical Leave time is not a determining factor in eligibility for catastrophic medical leave.
- Employees granted catastrophic medical leave must apply for long-term disability.
- Catastrophic medical leave cannot be continued once an employee is approved for long-term disability even if the approved period of the catastrophic medical leave has not been completed.
Catastrophic medical conditions
The determination of whether an employee's medical condition qualifies as a catastrophic medical condition will be based upon the documentation provided by the employee's licensed health care provider that the employee suffers from an extreme, life-threatening illness, injury or impairment (physical or mental) which requires continuing treatment/supervision by a health care provider and which is likely to cause the employee to take a prolonged leave without pay or to terminate employment with the university.
While a comprehensive list of specific medical conditions that would qualify an employee for catastrophic medical leave is not provided, the medical conditions listed here could be so extremely serious as to qualify for the leave. This list should not be considered as all inclusive or a guarantee of leave approval because each request is reviewed and considered on its own merits.
- Serious heart conditions
- Organ failure/transplant
- Fetal endangerment
Applying for catastrophic medical leave
Applications for Catastrophic Medical Leave are available in the office of human resources. To apply for catastrophic medical leave, an employee must complete a Catastrophic Medical Leave Request form and provide a certification from his/her physician regarding the extreme, life-threatening illness, injury or impairment (physical or mental) which requires continuing treatment/supervision by a health care provider.
Catastrophic medical leave review committee
In order to promote university-wide consistency in the granting of catastrophic medical leave and the length of such leaves, all requests for catastrophic medical leave will be reviewed by the Catastrophic Medical Leave Review Committee. If necessary, the committee may request that the employee or other persons familiar with the employee's situation or who can offer expertise on the matter being considered meet with the committee. The committee should render its opinion and recommendation to the office of human resources within 10 working days of receipt of the request and all relevant documentation and information.
Approval of catastrophic medical leave
Approval authority for granting a request for catastrophic medical leave rests with the requesting employee's cost center administrator. Cost center administrators will be required to fund any additional costs incurred by granting of catastrophic medical leave, such as the costs in hiring a temporary employee or the costs for supplemental salary paid to an employee who picks up the workload of the employee on catastrophic medical leave. The cost center administrator should render his/her decision within five working days of receipt of the request.
Appeal of catastrophic medical leave
If the decision by the cost center administrator is to deny the request for catastrophic medical leave or to grant a period of leave different (i.e., fewer days or more days) from the period recommended by the committee, the employee requesting the leave may appeal the decision to the university president.
Forms and publications