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WorkSafe Victoria releases return to work guidance for workers and employers

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WorkSafe Victoria  has released new guidance to assist employers and injured workers with the return to work process.

The new publications will help employers and injured workers understand their obligations and the steps needed to get workers back to safe and sustainable work. Under the Accident Compensation Act 1985, injured workers and employers have obligations.

In particular, employers must provide suitable employment, where an injured worker has some capacity for work, and it is critical that they regularly communicate with the injured worker and their doctor throughout the rehabilitation and return to work process.

Similarly, injured workers must make every reasonable effort to return to work in suitable employment and participate in assessments to determine their capacity for work, rehabilitation progress and future employment prospects.

The Director of WorkSafe Victoria’s Return to Work Division, Michelle Zorbas, said that with the number of workers compensation claims averaging about 30,000 per year, returning injured workers back to work has to be a priority.

“Helping them return to work in a safe and sustainable way not only assists in the early recovery and rehabilitation of the worker, it reduces productivity losses and minimises the impact on an employer’s workplace injury insurance costs.

“Both the employer and injured worker play a vital part in this process, which we know can sometimes be difficult.

“This is why the new guidance material was developed - to help employers and injured workers understand what they need to do and where to get further help if needed.”

The new guidance includes:

  • Returning to work: A guide for injured workers
  • Suitable employment for injured workers: A step by step guide
  • Return to work plan and Offer of suitable employment forms
  • Return to work inspectors fact sheet

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