Body to Balance provides a number of Occupational Health and Safety (OHS) services which include:
- Safe Manual Handling Training
- Workplace Hazard, Risk & Control Assessments
- Ergonomic Workstation Assessments onsite or online
- OHS Education and Training Seminars
- Health Screening & Health Monitoring of Employees
- Workplace Manual Therapy Treatment and Musculoskeletal Rehabilitation
- Injury Management and Return to Work Programs
- Pre-Employment Medical Examinations (through OH&Solutions)
All training and assessments are tailored to the individual company needs and can be conducted onsite or online. Contact us today to see how we can help you as a healthy and productive workforce is essential in today’s competitive environment.
Some Facts on Workers Compensation in Australia
- In 2018 to 2019 there were 114,435 (or 9.4 per 1000 employees) serious Australian Workers’ Compensation claims and 183 worker fatalities. A serious claim is defined as a workers compensation claim that resulted in absence from work for 1 week or more and/ or that is eligible for common law compensation.
- Work-related musculoskeletal disorders accounted for 87% of these serious claims and other diseases accounted for 13%.
- The major cause of serious claims were 36% due to body stressing, 23% due to slips, trips and falls, and 16% due to being hit by moving objects.
- Looking at body stressing as the major cause 36% of these injuries were to the back or spine, 19% to the shoulder and 9% to the knee.
- The occupations with the highest rate of serious claims per million hours worked were labourers (16.4%), Community & Personal Service Workers (11.9%), and Machinery Operators & Drivers (10.4%).
- The industries with the highest rates of serious claims per million hours worked were Agriculture, Forestry & Fishing (9.2%), Manufacturing (8.4%), and Transport, Postal & Warehousing (8.2%).
- The median time lost off work per serious claim was 6.2 weeks and the median compensation paid for $12600.
Fortunately the rate of serious claims in the workplace is declining due to good occupational health & safety measures re-enforced by government policy. Measures such as the National Return to Work Strategy 2020-2030 and the Australian Work Health & Safety Strategy 2012-2022 have assisted this by ensuring workers have a healthy and safe working environment and when this fails increasing employers preparation, response and management of work-related injuries and illnesses and encouraging workers to stay in or make a positive and timely return to good work following a work-related injury or illness. However, from 2000 to 2018 the median times lost off work per serious claim has increased by 48% and the median compensation paid has increased by 194%. This has resulted in a significant cost in lost productivity and expenditure to employers with workers compensation claims (Safework Australia, 2019; Safework Australia, 2020).
What Is the Legal Responsibility of an Employer?
In Victoria the Occupational Health and Safety Act 2004 and in other states and territories of Australia the Model Work Health and Safety Act requires employers to ensure the workplace they are operating in are safe and free from risks to health and safety, as far as reasonably practicable. This includes identifying the likelihood of an employee, customer or visitor being exposed to a hazard and a potential risk eventuating, the degree of harm that would result if the risk eventuated, how to eliminate the risk or if not reasonably practicable to reduce the risk, the availability and suitability of controls to eliminate or reduce the risk and the cost or practicability of doing so (WorkSafe Victoria, 2007, pg.5). The Workplace Injury Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 2013 together with WorkSafe Victoria requires the employer of a worker with a work-related injury or illness to assist the injured worker to receive medical treatment, notify Worksafe if the incident caused or had the potential to cause serious injury or illness, ensure the incident is recorded in the register of injuries, provide the employee with return to work information and not to ignore the early signs of the injury or illness(WorkSafe Victoria, 2013).
Why Should an Employer engage OHS Services?
There is extensive research to indicate that occupational health and safety programs result in a healthy workforce that results in a vast number of benefits such as increased productivity, reduced work-related injuries and illnesses, staff loyalty and retention, a positive social climate and is usually more cost effective. Likewise when occupational health & safety controls fail resulting in a work-related injury or illness early workplace identification, treatment and management including assisting a timely and safe return to work plan is effective in reducing the economic costs of the work-related injury or illness to the employer (Ellis, 2001; Waddell 2006).
Safework Australia. (2019). Australian Workers’ Compensation Statistics. https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/sites/default/files/2021-01/Australian%20Workers%20%20Compensation%20Statistics%202018-19p%20FINAL_2.pdf
Safework Australia. (2020). National Return to Work Strategy 2020-2030. https://www.safeworkaustralia.gov.au/rtw
WorkSafe Victoria. (2013). A Guide for Employers: What to do if a worker is injured. https://content.api.worksafe.vic.gov.au/sites/default/files/2019-07/ISBN-What-to-do-if-a-worker-is-injured-web-a-guide-for-employers-2019-07.pdf
Ellis, N. (2001). Work and health: Management in Australia and New Zealand. Melbourne: Oxford University Press, pp. 308-319
Waddell, Gordon. (2006). Preventing incapacity in people with musculoskeletal disorders. British Medical Bulletin, 77-78(1), 55–69. https://doi.org/10.1093/bmb/ldl008