Returning employees to work after injury is important to ensure they do not end up isolated, depressed or disempowered.
An effective return to work plan enables a smooth transition back to the workplace. It helps to develop coping strategies and effectively manage the psychological impact of the injury. It also helps them to re-engage in meaningful, productive activities, regain identity and feel confident, fulfilled and valued.
Tools and technologies aiding a quicker return for injured employees
By early identifying barriers to recovery, we can intervene at an early stage. We are able to address these obstacles before they become harder to overcome and prevent an employee’s return to the workplace.
When managing a return-to-work plan, we use a variety of psychosocial screening assessment tools to tell us which early interventions are required. These include the APM IQ Life Index Questionnaire, DASS – 21, Fear Avoidance Beliefs Questionnaire (FABQ), Flags Matrix and Case Complexity Assessment Tool, K10, Orebro Musculoskeletal Pain Questionnaire (OMPQ), Suicide Risk Assessment & Action Guidelines, and WHODAS 2.0 – 36 items. With these, we are able to help the injured employee understand their experience and develop strategies to deal with any psychological barriers early on.
We also use a health check report updated daily to assist us in providing proactive, quality case management, and risk assessment tools and regular file reviews. This way, we can identify risks and barriers, create strategies to manage them, and establish SMART goals that facilitate a timely, safe, and sustainable return to work.
Our rehab consultants also recommend useful resources through modern technology. These include mindfulness, meditation, sleep monitor and exercise apps, alongside a suite of ServiceNow® Safe Workplace apps such as the Employment Readiness Core and Employee Readiness Surveys.
Preparing an employee to return to work
By consulting with the key parties involved – their supervisor, treating healthcare professionals, employer, and HR – the rehabilitation consultant develops a safe return to work plan for the employee, incorporating anticipated barriers.
A workplace assessment to begin with establishes the demands on the employee in their role and allows us to identify suitable duties in line with their work capacity and the medical recommendations.
The safe workplace plan should provide guidelines to the employer and employee on workplace procedures and safe manual handling techniques etc. A visual flow chart can be created and utilised here.
Finally, timely and regular case conferences with all key parties assists in achieving positive outcomes.
Integrity, collaboration, respect, empathy, achievement and teamwork are company values we live by
APM WorkCare rehabilitation consultants are fully supported by consistent and proactive leadership. They are always helping us to continuously improve the quality of our practice, develop professional skills and knowledge, and strive for the best outcomes. They appreciate and celebrate all of our successes and achievements.
We also use the most reliable, effective, and efficient technologies and systems, and participate in various industry events that are great for networking.
There really is a lot of opportunity for professional development. Our rehabilitation consultants enjoy having such a meaningful impact on people’s lives and it is great being in an environment that enables us to flourish.
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