Free Knowledge Base Articles

Return to Work Matters is Australia’s leading independent resource for return to work professionals.

Dr Mary Wyatt is committed to sharing information that can make a meaningful difference to RTW experiences and outcomes. Based on feedback that shows some people have difficulty convincing their employers to provide access, we have decided to make about 1 of every 7 articles free - and create a small best practice knowledge base that is available to everyone.

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Listed below are our Free Articles - Click the ‘Free Research Articles’ button to visit our Free Research Summaries and Updates.

Role Summary: Co-workers

contributorA. Richey

An injured individual who feels supported and confident with work colleagues has a better return...

Can we change workplace culture by the way we talk?

contributorRobert Aurbach

What if we change the language in the workplace?

What is the difference between cancer and whiplash?

contributorDavid Butler

“When a lot of remedies are suggested for a disease, that means it can’t be cured” -...

Examining supervisor competencies and return to work

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Competencies supervisors need to affect positive RTW outcomes for workers suffering...

Most Victorian GPs not recommending RTW: study

contributorRTWMatters team

A study shows that Victorian GPs are unlikely to recommend alternate duties for injured workers.

Broken people from broken systems

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

For many injured workers, the greatest challenge is not the extent of their injuries but the...

The case of the "lying" handyman

contributorStefanie Garber

How can Return to Work professionals prevent suspicion and mistrust from derailing a claim?

Guidelines on shoulder rotator cuff problems

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Flow charts detailing shoulder pain treatment

The jewels of case management

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Trust, efficiency, senior management involvement and the all-important connection between the...

Why we are pro best practice case management

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Dr Wyatt reflects on research she conducted, highlighting that the worker-centred approach...

Applying Risk Theory to Occupational Health

contributorMark Cassidy

A simple adaptation of risk theory to occupational health can deliver significant improvements...

Reader Feedback: Tips on getting the most out of Return to Work Matters

contributorCheryl Griffiths

Our recent survey responses highlighted the number of ways that RTW Matters content is being...

For Doctors - Back and neck pain: does age (and work) make a difference?

contributorCharlotte Leboeuf-Yde

Professor Charlotte Leboeuf-Yde outlines key findings based on the study of 40,000 Danes.

Give a little bit of 'tough' and you'll probably get some back


We all know what happens to that which goes around (it comes around), so why do we sometimes...

The Value of Questions and Early Answers


Gather round, I've got a story to tell - and it starts with a question...

The power of learned optimism

contributorScott Sanderson

How 'learned optimism' can improve return to work outcomes: Breaking down Theo Feldbrugge's...

Decisions about surgery: The rock and the hard place

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Successful surgery starts with the best decision about whether surgery should be performed.

Leading the pack or dragging it down?

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

When one part of the system underperforms, the others follow suit.

Mental health buy-in

contributorTom Barton

Financial commitment is just the beginning

Developing a successful rehabilitation program: case study

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Interview with Garry Pearce, Director of Rehabilitation for the Tasmanian Department of Health.

Garnering consensus on the importance of work to health

contributorGabrielle Lis and Dr Mary Wyatt

Occupational Physicians have brought together a broad group to join forces on changing beliefs...

Australian Consensus Statement on the Health Benefits of Work

contributorAustralasian Faculty of Occupational and Environmental Medicine

Occupational Physicians garner stakeholder support to influence policy initiatives and...

Decision-making justice Part 1.

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

A good decision making process is worth its weight in platinum, making this a key read for...

Why train supervisors and line managers in return to work?

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

A Powerpoint presentation on the whys and wherefores of supervisor training in RTW management.

Returning to hard work

contributorMary Harris

Genius, they say, is 1% inspiration, and 99% perspiration. This case study looks at how four...

Emotional resilience: 1

contributorTom Barton

This first of a two-part series investigates the negative health and work effects of pessimism,...

Price for patients of no-cost compensation

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Should workers' comp recipients share treatment costs with their employers?

Patient advocacy and workers' comp

contributorGabrielle Lis

Workers' comp cases present GPs and other health professionals with opportunities for meaningful...

Moving backwards on backs

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

The messages of a $6 million public health campaign about back pain are being lost thanks to...

Suicide and work injury

contributorTom Barton

New Australian research shows that workers with psychological injuries are not the only ones who...

Driving change

contributorTom Barton

How one car manufacturer steered their ageing workforce towards higher productivity

Stress and emotional resilience

contributorGabrielle Lis and Tom Barton

Ever wondered what RTW and sabre-toothed tigers have in common? Or why some people bounce back...

How trustworthy is trust?

contributorRTWMatters team

Trust is a key predictor of organisational success, says the Great Places to Work Institute....

Jokes, bullying and RTW

contributorLara Forth

Lara felt bullied by her case manager and colleagues when she returned to work - even when they...

Flagging the obstacle course of bad outcomes

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

From the hot tubs of New Zealand to the bread and butter of a RTW Coordinator's work.

Are worker's comp boards serving return to work?

contributorTom Barton

And can you pick the Australian jurisdiction in which board members have NO hands-on experience...

Harmonisation housekeeping

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Our advice for legislators? Don't rearrange the lounge suite while there is mildew growing up...

The Principles Underlying RTW - Draft 2

contributorDr Mary Wyatt

Is it 'compensation' or 'rehabilitation'?

Not working is bad for the heart and the head. There's proof.

contributorRobert Hughes

UK research evidence shows that risk of death for workless people is 20% higher.

Are you happy with your working relationships?

contributorRobert Hughes

Workers' Comp has a high staff turnaround, so a working relationship still great after 11 years...