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More support for injured workers to return to work: WorkSafe Victoria

Source: SafeWork Vic

More than 3000 Victorians who have been off work long-term as a result of a work-place injury need more support and encouragement from employers and doctors to return to work, WorkSafe Victoria has said.

A Position Statement signed last week by the Royal Australasian College of Physicians and the Australasian Faculty of Occupational and Environmental Medicine indicated that long breaks from work through disability or unemployment adversely affects wellbeing.

Director of WorkSafe Victoria's Return to Work Division, Dorothy Frost said: "While a physical injury may heal relatively quickly, other physical and psychological effects often develop and/or be made worse the longer someone is off work.

"It is vital workers, their employers, doctors and other treatment professionals and families understand this, but also that help is available for everybody involved, so no one is alone in the process."

According to WorkSafe Victoria, most of the 28,000 people who make workers compensation claims in Victoria each year take no time off or are back at work within a month.

However, Frost said that the number of people returning to work in Victoria could still be improved.

"Getting back to work as soon as it is safe to do is a vital part of ensuring their quality of life," she said.

WorkSafe publications and tools are available here worksafe.vic.gov.au. These include:
- Return-to-Work Coordination - the basics you need to know
- What to do if a worker is injured - A guide for employers
- A Step by step guide to assessing suitable employment options
- Return to Work Arrangements

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