KNOW YOUR RIGHTS: Injury Rehabilitation
Rehabilitation of an injured worker is a vital part of what an employer should be doing to assist any of its workers. The last thing an injured worker should have to do is battle to receive suitable alternative duties. The SDA is here to protect and help members through this process.
What is Rehabilitation?
Rehabilitation is the process of returning an injured worker who is unable to do their normal job back to work by providing them with suitable alternative duties consistent with their medical restrictions.
Who should be in control of my Rehabilitation?
Many people may have input into your rehabilitation, including your Site Manager, Line Manager, Supervisor, Site Rehabilitation R.T.W. Co-Ordinator, Medical Providers (like Doctors and Occupational Therapists), Claims Officers from the Insurer or Self-Insurer and the Union. However, your own treating Doctor is the key person in this group and nothing should happen in relation to your rehabilitation without his/her knowledge and approval.
What is the role of Management?
Management’s main role is to provide suitable alternative duties for the injured worker which are consistent with the restrictions and limitations placed on the injured worker by their treating Doctor. They should also monitor the progress of the worker while on these alternative duties to ensure that the injury is not being aggravated.
Management do not have the right to change the alternative duties that the injured worker is doing without input from, and the approval of, the injured worker’s treating Doctor. The injured worker must be involved in this change.
What is the role of the Site Rehabilitation R.T.W. Co-Ordinator?
The Rehabilitation R.T.W. Co-Ordinator is a member of staff appointed by the employer. Their role is to co-ordinate the injured worker’s return to work by liaising with management, the treating Doctor, other medical providers and the insurer in establishing and maintaining suitable alternative duties consistent with the worker’s medical restrictions and an overall Rehabilitation Plan for the worker.
This process should always be done with the knowledge and involvement of the injured worker and his or her treating Doctor. The Rehabilitation R.T.W. Co-Ordinator is not a medically qualified person and should not be making any decisions them-selves about what duties a person can or can’t do or what medical treatment/investigations an injured worker does or does not need.
You can download this flyer here: Injury Rehabilitation