Yes FMLA does cover your absences with a doctor note no matter what the medical condition is that is being treated. Bed rest and any other treatment does qualify. It is not up to or legal for your employer to interpret the law or the disease and treatment plan
In the U.S., you have several laws protecting your ability to keep working in spite of chronic illness. The Family Medical Leave Act (FMLA) and the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) are federal laws, so they apply across the country. Individual state laws may apply, as well. You should also know what, if any, policies your employer has regarding excessive sick time and disciplinary
Even though it’s a federal law, the FMLA only covers certain businesses. You and your workplace are covered IF:
You’ve worked there for at least a year,
AND you’ve put in at least 1,250 hours in the past year,
AND your employer has 50 or more employers within a 75-mile radius.
In addition to prolonged leaves of absence, such as maternity leave, the FMLA allows you to take what’s called intermittent leave for a serious health problem. That’s what your sporadic sick days would fall under, as long as they’re related to your chronic conditions.
Is your health problem legally considered “serious”? Along with pregnancy, hospitalization, or conditions requiring long-term care, the Department of Labor considers an
illness serious if it’s a chronic condition that causes periods of incapacity.
Your employer is required to allow you up to 12 total weeks a year of leave, which averages out to five missed days per month. However, the company isn’t required to pay you for any of this (beyond what sick time you may have.) That 12 weeks is your total leave, not just intermittent, so if you take 8 weeks maternity leave, that only leaves you 4 weeks – 20 intermittent days – for the rest of the year.
To qualify for intermittent leave, you need to provide medical certification of your illness. You can’t be disciplined in any way for taking leave under the FMLA.
This doesn’t mean, though, that continued regular absences won’t impact your employment. If your boss determines that the days you miss interfere with your ability to do your job, you can be transferred to a comparable job – one that has at least the same pay and benefits as your current position and isn’t less desirable – if possible. It’s also possible that the company won’t have a job that’s suitable for someone who has to miss a lot of workdays, and that could put you out of work.