Safety, Health and Wellbeing

Injury management

Our role is to develop and assist in the implementation of the UWA safety, health and wellbeing programs in order to minimise the risk of injury, illness and property damage.

We provide consultancy and other services to promote best practice and legislative compliance in all University and related activities.

Further information

Injury Management Policy

Safety and Health

UWA injury management consultants, Phone (+61 8) 6488 4683.

Workcover Infoline

Workcover, Phone (+61 8) 9388 5555.

Training

Safety and Health provides training for all interested parties.

The University undertakes injury management with employees following a work-related injury, illness or disease.

The implementation of the UWA Injury Management Guidelines, for compensable injuries, is undertaken in accordance with the Workers Compensation and Injury Management Act 1981. Assistance may also be given following a non-work-related injury.

Injury management is defined as a workplace-managed process incorporating the employer and medical management team, from the time of injury to facilitate an efficient maintenance in or return to suitable employment.

Effective injury management:

  • provides physical, psychological and financial benefits to employees
  • minimises disruption to work
  • reduces costs to all concerned.
  1. Injury management objectives
  2. Injury management process: compensable
  3. Return to work programs
  4. Injury management process: non-compensable
  5. Injury management team: responsibilities
  6. Disputes
  7. Confidentiality

Injury management objectives

  • To establish a clear process for all staff following injury, illness or disability.
  • To facilitate the safe and early return to meaningful work for injured employees through communication with all relevant parties.
  • To ensure injured employees receive early and accurate medical assessment with the involvement of a vocational rehabilitation provider as required.
  • To encourage the co-operation of management and colleagues of the injured person in order to provide a supportive social environment within the workplace.
  • To assist the employee to return to their pre-injury position or another position within the University where possible. If neither of these options are possible, external work positions may be sought.

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Injury management process: compensable

1. Injury occurs

  1. Injured employee attends treating medical practitioner. The treating medical practitioner will issue a Workers' Compensation First Medical Certificate that outlines guidelines for return to work or if time off work is required.
  2. Employee completes Part 1 of the Confidential Incident/Injury Report Form or Needlestick / Sharps Injury or Exposure to Body Fluid Report Form.
  3. Part 1 of the form, and medical certificate, are faxed to UWA Safety and Health on (+61 8) 6488 1179 immediately.
  4. As appropriate, the treating medical practitioner and supervisor discuss suitable return to work duties available to the employee. A Return to Work Program is prepared by the Injury Management Consultant and is distributed to the employee, manager/supervisor and treating medical practitioner.
  5. Employee returns to work noting the restrictions by the treating medical practitioner and return to work program guidelines. If the supervisor or employee has any concerns, contact the Injury Management Consultant in UWA Safety and Health.

2. Ongoing management

  1. The supervisor is to be kept informed as to the employee's progress via further progress medical certificates. Once these certificates have been seen by the supervisor, they are then forwarded to UWA Safety and Health.
  2. If there is any difficulty returning the employee to work or maintaining them at work, the Injury Management Consultant should be advised and an approved vocational rehabilitation provider may be appointed to assist.

3. Finalisation

  1. Once the employee has returned to normal duties or a suitable alternate position and no longer requires medical treatment, injury management will cease and the claim should be finalised with a workers' compensation final medical certificate.

If injury management/vocational rehabilitation is unsuccessful then it may cease before the claim is finalised.

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Return to work programs

The University will endeavour to provide appropriate duties for a return to work program wherever possible, as part of the injury management process. All return to work programs and changes to them must be approved by the treating medical practitioner.

If the employee cannot return to normal duties immediately, "alternative duties" may be provided. These may include:

  • pre-injury duties on a part time basis
  • modified pre-injury duties (part- or full-time)
  • supernumerary (assisting others)
  • different duties in the same or different area.

Alternative duties are provided on a temporary basis only. If an employee is required to gain an alternative permanent position within the University, normal recruitment procedures apply. Training and assistance can be provided to assist in this process as part of the injury management program.

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Injury management process: non-compensable

  1. Non-compensable injury occurs
    1. Injured employee receives approval by their treating medical practitioner to return to work.
    2. Injured employee contacts UWA Safety and Health for assistance.
    3. As appropriate, the treating medical practitioner and supervisor discuss suitable return to work duties available to the employee. A return to work program is prepared by the Injury Management Consultant and is distributed to the employee, manger/supervisor and treating medical practitioner.
    4. Employee returns to work noting the restrictions by the treating medical practitioner and return to work program guidelines. If the supervisor or employee has any concerns, contact the Injury Management Consultant in UWA Safety and Health.
  2. Ongoing management
    1. The supervisor is to be kept informed as to the employee's progress via further medical certificates. Once these certificates have been seen by the supervisor, they are then forwarded to UWA Safety and Health.
  3. Finalisation
    1. Occurs when the employee has returned to normal duties, is not longer requiring medical treatment, or is happy to self-manage the injury.

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Injury management team: responsibilities

As part of the injury management process, a number of people may be involved to maximise the injured worker's recovery. All parties should be working towards a mutually agreed upon goal. These people include:

  • Manager/supervisor – these people play a key role in ensuring the success of injury management. They are required to liaise with the employee, treating medical practitioner, and injury management consultant/rehabilitation provider on a regular basis. They are also required to provide suitable duties for a return to work program as specified by the treating medical practitioner. WorkCover's Injury Management: A Guide for Employers has more information.
  • Medical/allied health practitioners – are required to provide suitable information to advise the employee and employer of return to work requirements and to provide treatment to assist injury recovery. This may include referrals to specialists for review/treatment and liasing with rehabilitation providers.
  • UWA Injury Management Consultant/Manager of Injury Management and Wellbeing - provides assessment, information, support and recommendations to the injury management team to assist in the return to work process.
  • Insurer - is involved as part of the management of the workers' compensation claim.

Other parties that may become involved include:

  • Approved Vocational Rehabilitation Provider – if long-term support is required, an approved vocational rehabilitation provider may be appointed in conjunction with the employee, employer and treating medical practitioner.
  • Union/safety representative – may act as an advocate as required.

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Disputes

If issues cannot be resolved within UWA, the employer or employee can refer unresolved matters regarding workers' compensation and injury management to the Conciliation and Arbitration Services at WorkCover WA.

Further support is also available through the UWA Employee Assistance Program.

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Confidentiality

The injury management process, for both compensable and non-compensable injuries, illnesses or diseases, is highly confidential and all records relating to injured employees will only be made available to authorised people.

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