Every workplace has an element of inherent risk attached to it, but that doesn’t mean you should expect to get injured in the line of duty. Instead, you should feel confident that your workplace has suitable strategies in place to put the risk of injury at a minimum. But accidents do happen, and it’s important you know how to deal with a workplace injury so everyone has the best outcome.
Your Great Aunt Irma and your nosy neighbour Norm may have very strong opinions about your workplace injury, but you may need to seek the advice of people who have a stronger legal understanding of your rights and responsibilities. Chat to your workplace about the incident, what they will do to assist you, and what is required of you, particularly if you need to take time off work or reduce your hours or responsibilities. Even if you feel confident in your boss’s handling of the situation, it is useful to discuss the incident with a legal expert. Specialists like Sinnamon Lawyers can give you professional advice about workplace injuries to ensure you get the best outcome possible.
Rearrange the workplace
If you’re keen to get back to work while still recovering, you may be able to make a few small adjustments to your workplace to assist you starting back sooner. This may include a different desk or supportive chair to promote better posture for back, neck or shoulder issues. If you work with large equipment, you may need to temporarily introduce a step ladder to assist getting in and out of the machinery. If you work with patients, like a massage therapist or physio, you could get an automatic lift for chairs and beds to save you bending over or reaching higher. There are plenty of options, and your workplace may be very happy to provide them if it means getting you back in the job sooner. Don’t be afraid to ask!
Dealing with the aftermath of a workplace injury can be very stressful. In the best-case scenario, you’re not too badly injured and can get back to work quickly. In the worst-case scenario, you may be facing long-term or permanent health issues, your workplace may be unsupportive and you may never be able to get back to work, at least not in the same capacity. This can be a terrifying situation, particularly if you’re young or have dependents, so one of the best defences against this sort of situation is to be prepared before it happens. Options like income protection insurance, watertight workplace rights, and joining your union are all ways you can combat the potential long-term issues of sustaining a workplace injury.
Dealing with a workplace injury can be very stressful, so make sure you understand your rights and how your workplace can help you overcome barriers to getting back to work, and don’t be afraid to ask for help. Have you been in this situation? Share your tips for dealing with workplace injury below.