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Bristol Myers Squibb becomes UK’s first pharma company to be accredited as ‘menopause friendly’

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Pharmaceutical giant Bristol Myers Squibb has become the first pharmaceutical company in the UK to be accredited as a ‘menopause friendly workplace’.

The accreditation, awarded by an independent panel of judges, recognises employers who put diversity, inclusion and wellbeing at the centre stage of their business.

Bristol Myers Squibb (BMS) said it rung in the changes in recognition of the fact that nearly eight of 10 menopausal women are in work and that this is the fastest growing demographic in the workforce.

Panel members described BMS UK&I’s application as “outstanding” and acknowledged “the huge strides they have made to help normalise the menopause” by fostering an inclusive culture.

Support and education

The company said it has pioneered a range of menopause-friendly initiatives to support women at work since last March which include:

• A detailed internal menopause guidance document to support and educate all UK&I staff
o This includes details on the different types of menopause, how symptoms can affect daily work, and signposting to internal and external resources

• A reasonable adjustments form to help accommodate staff experiencing menopausal symptoms

• A Rapid Access Female Treatment Service (RAFT) that allows employees experiencing severe menopausal symptoms in the workplace to be referred to a consultant gynaecologist who is an accredited British Menopause Society specialist

• Training 17 menopause advocates across UK&I sites who help educate, raise awareness, and signpost colleagues on their menopause journey

• A menopause portal developed for employees, by employees, to access support and information

• Training more than 60 per cent of the UK&I workforce on menopause awareness

Scott Cooke, general manager for BMS UK&I, said: “I am so proud that Bristol Myers Squibb UK&I is the first pharmaceutical company to have been officially awarded Menopause Friendly status, highlighting our continued commitment to ensuring that all people affected by the menopause feel supported at work.

“I am delighted that we are helping lead the way in changing how businesses think about the menopause, and we remain passionate about accelerating change in workplace best practice and fostering an inclusive culture where everyone can bring their authentic selves to work every day.”

Members of the accreditation board include Professor Jo Brewis, lead author of the Government Equalities Office report on ‘The effects of menopause transition on women’s economic participation in the UK’, and Bernice Allport MBE, former chair of the cross-government Menopause Network.

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