Catch 22? Disclosing assisted conception treatment at work

van den Akker, Olga ORCID logoORCID:, Payne, Nicola ORCID logoORCID: and Lewis, Suzan ORCID logoORCID: (2017) Catch 22? Disclosing assisted conception treatment at work. International Journal of Workplace Health Management, 10 (5) . pp. 364-375. ISSN 1753-8351 [Article] (doi:10.1108/IJWHM-03-2017-0022)

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Purpose: The purpose of this study was to explore factors influencing decision-making about disclosure of Assisted Reproductive Technology (ART) use in the workplace.

Design: A qualitative study design was used. Thirty-one women and six men who were using or had recently used ART were recruited from British fertility networks and interviewed. Data were transcribed verbatim and thematically analysed.

Findings: Two main strands were identified each encompassing two themes: i) ‘Concerns about disclosure’ covered the very personal nature of disclosing ART treatment and also career concerns and ii) ‘Motives for disclosure’ covered feeling it was necessary to disclose and also the influence of workplace relationships.

Research limitations: The relatively small, self-selected sample of participants was recruited from fertility support networks, and lacked some diversity.

Practical implications: Clarity about entitlements to workplace support and formal protection against discrimination, along with management training and awareness raising about ART treatment is needed to help normalise requests for support and to make decisions about disclosure within the workplace easier.

Originality/ value: The study has highlighted an understudied area of research in ART populations. The data provide insight into the challenging experiences of individuals combining ART with employment and, in particular, the complexity of decisions about whether or not to disclose.

Item Type: Article
Research Areas: A. > School of Science and Technology > Psychology > Applied Health Psychology group
Item ID: 22259
Notes on copyright: This is the accepted version of the manuscript "Catch 22? Disclosing assisted conception treatment at work", published in the journal "International Journal of Workplace Health Management" available via the journal site at: This article is © Emerald Publishing Limited and permission has been granted for this version to appear here. Emerald does not grant permission for this article to be further copied/distributed or hosted elsewhere without the express permission from Emerald Group Publishing Limited.
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Depositing User: Olga Van Den akker
Date Deposited: 19 Jul 2017 13:58
Last Modified: 29 Nov 2022 20:35

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