Return to Work
When your program is not acknowledged
By Tracy Slywka, Injury Solutions
There have been many articles written about return to work programs and the
benefits that go with them. If you are a private company and have a return to
work program, how do you let insurers know that you have this program? The
Saskatchewan Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) does not have a way of permanently re-cording
whether or not an employer has a fully functioning return to work program. There
have been a few instances lately where the Saskatchewan WCB has called into question an
employers’ return to work program, yet no one picked up the phone to have that conversa-tion.
How does an employer prevent this sort of thing from happening?
When an injury occurs and you are filling out the Employers’ Report of Injury
(E1), on a separate piece of paper state that your place of business has a return
to work program and that you can accommodate restrictions. If you have
any documentation that the worker has signed off on stating that they
are aware of the company’s policy on return to work, also include this.
The importance of documentation cannot be emphasized enough!
It is so important to be on top of return to work right from the start.
It is your responsibility as an employer to stay on top of return to
work, and an employer must be aggressive with this approach!
An employer must have a return to work program under the
WCB Act, 2013. If you do not have one, now is the time to get
one in place. Some people think that having a manual is enough,
but it is not. You cannot have a program without training all staff
members. You can’t expect workers to know what the procedure is
if they have not been trained on it. It is important all staff is trained
together so there is consistent messaging on the program, its expec-tations
and maintains transparency. Often organizations will have a re-turn
to work program but it’s the best-kept secret in an office desk or it is
just a practice.
Another important thing to think about is documentation. Documentation is criti-cal.
Yes, paperwork can be cumbersome, but it may be your “get out of jail card” someday
With the changes coming to the
WCB rate model, implementing
a return to work program is
more important than ever.
thinkbigmagazine.ca | Quarter 1 2018 | Think BIG 53