Anne Richey | Work-related mental stress places a burden on the health and welfare of employees, as well as having an impact on workplace productivity and the Australian economy.
In a 2013 report, The Incidence of Accepted Workers Compensation Claims for Mental Stress in Australia, Safe Work Australia compiled statistics on mental disorders and included information from other reports and research. A large number of workers are estimated to be impacted by mental health disorders, and there are known prevention options which can be used in the workplace. more >>
Gabrielle Lis and Tom Barton | Ever wondered what RTW and sabre-toothed tigers have in common? Or why some people bounce back quicker than others from stressful situations?
The human palette, according to cognitive psychologist Nancy Etcoff, is capable of detecting sweetness at a ratio of 1:200. Dilute one teaspoon of sugar into 200 teaspoons of water, and we’ll notice. We love sugar! But here’s a confounder for the optimists: the human palette is capable of detecting bitterness at a ratio of 1:2000000. Etcoff’s comparison suggests that, in general, humans are more tuned in to the unpleasant than the pleasant. more >>
Anna Kelsey-Sugg | Causes of stress, and why it will never disappear if we don't encourage the right behaviours.
The Beatles were onto something. “The long and winding road that leads to your door,” they sang, “will never disappear”. Some things in life are constant and can be relied upon to appear again and again. Just like stress. Occupational or workplace stress is common – and it is constantly increasing. It threatens to knock at the door of any workplace, on every supervisor’s or manager’s office. more >>
SuperDoc | Are stress management programs for managers the key to reducing stress claim costs?
You probably like me as much for my SuperDoc puns as my SuperDoc advice, but this week I’ve discovered a new vibe: SuperDoc straight-talk. So let’s get down to business. Stress is on the rise and we need effective ways of managing it. This means tackling workplace stress in all its stages: from prevention, to early management of a relatively minor stress situation, to a full-blown case where the person may never return to work unless effective steps are taken. more >>
Between 2003 and 2012, SafeWork Australia found that 18 workers were killed by reversing trucks. In an effort to counter these statistics, VicRoads is updating its fleet with radar-based reverse braking technology. The new brakes sense when there is an object behind the vehicle and if placed in reverse, the brakes are automatically applied. The technology is standard in new vehicles in Europe, Japan and the US. The decision follows a six month trial of the technology. Their aim is a reduction in worksite risk, and they hope that it will become standard across the industry.
WorkCover NSW have entered into a $1m partnership with the Australian Paralympic Committee to provide injured young workers and road accident victims with access to mentoring from paralympians. “This partnership will give young injured people hope and encouragement by forging an invaluable connection with sporting heroes who have overcome similar experiences and achieved at the highest level,” NSW Minister for Finance, Services and Property, Dominic Perrottet said. Under the system, paralympians will share their inspiring stories and offer support to people injured in serious accidents.
A NSW Court of Appeals decision means that injured workers will only be able to make one claim for their injury. If the injury deteriorates they will not be able to top up lump sum compensation payments. Although benefits were recently increased in the state for more seious injuries, those with less serious injuries will find it harder to access benefits. There are concerns that compensation periods may expire before a decision is made by the Workers' Compensation Commission or has been appealed in the courts. There are concerns that many workers will be prevented from gaining access to the medical treatments and income support needed.
A psychiatrist has been found guilty of defrauding the Victorian WorkCover Authority of $44,000 in what the judge described as "systematic rorting." The offences included providing false information which caused an inpatient to spend more time in hospital. He was accused of providing false information 144 times to staff at a Dandenong hospital in order to claim $21,735 for outpatient consultations. He also provided false information 35 times to make claims for $13,399 for inpatients, and $7439 for benefit to the clinic. Hospital staff were not complicit in the rorting. The magistrated fined the psychiatrist $5000 and a six month jail sentence suspended for nine months.