The revisions to the UK’s sick note system recently suggested by the government have been welcomed by the Chartered Institute of Personnel and Development.

Employee relations advisor at the organisation Ben Willmott stated that there needs to be alterations in the procedure and that laying emphasis on what individuals could do in instead of focusing on what they cannot "has to be a good thing".

Recently, health secretary Alan Johnson said that he wanted GPs to issue ‘well notes’ as opposed to the traditional sick note. The measure is intended as a means of tackling the UK’s sick note culture.

Commenting on the issue, Mr Willmott said: "More than three-quarters of our members said they would like to see the sick note method revised to provide more information from GPs on issues around a phased return to work."

He went on to say that research published by the Department of Work and Pensions in 2006 indicated that there is a link between work and health and that, often, working is part of an individual’s process of rehabilitation.