Safe Work Australia is a corresponding member of the ISSA Prevention Section on Information for Prevention.
Safe Work Australia data shows that in 2017–18 over 100,000 serious workers’ compensation claims were made relating to work-related injuries and illnesses involving a week or more off work. The impact of this is felt in the daily lives of workers, by their employers, and by their families and communities.
In partnership with government, business, industry and unions, Safe Work Australia developed the National Return to Work Strategy 2020–2030 (the Strategy), an ambitious 10-year action plan to improve return to work outcomes for workers with a work-related injury or illness. The Strategy is an evidence-based framework focused on minimising the impact of work-related injury and illness and optimising workers’ recovery and capacity to work. “Workers are at the heart of the Strategy – we want to help them recover and return to a safe and supportive workplace,” said Safe Work Australia CEO, Michelle Baxter.
The return to work process can be complex and involves a range of stakeholders. The Strategy aims to better support workers through this process and help stakeholders do the same. To date, Australian states and territories have largely worked independently on return to work processes. The Strategy has been widely welcomed as a plan for national action.“The Strategy is built on a shared commitment to improve outcomes for workers and pave the way for ongoing national collaboration,” Ms. Baxter added.
The Strategy’s primary audience are those who influence work and workplaces, including policy makers, workers’ compensation authorities, employers, union and industry groups, insurers and claims management organisations, treating health practitioners, workplace rehabilitation providers, and other worker advocates.