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Stay at work: return to work

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Getting back to work is an important step in recovering from a work-related injury and means a worker can return to a normal life, often reducing the financial and emotional impact on them and their family.

Returning to work may mean you’ve gone back to your old job or another job. However, being injured at work doesn’t always mean time off work. Continuing to work during your rehabilitation, called stay at work, is often the best thing for you. This can mean working reduced hours or lighter duties (suitable duties). More about the return to work process.

Research tells us that stay at work has important health and well being benefits. An early return to work and activity helps prevent long-term disability and improves the likelihood of you continuing to work once you’ve returned (called sustainable return to work).

Benefits of rehabilitation

We all have an interest in helping workers return to work—employers, workers, doctors, and health providers all benefit from being committed to rehabilitation. Who's involved in return to work?

Worker benefits 

As a worker, your participation and commitment to rehabilitation means:

  • return to work quickly and safely
  • less disruption to family, work and social life
  • improved employment and financial security
  • less time spent recovering from your injury
  • reduced level of impairment.  

Employer benefits

There are benefits for early return to work for employers too; employer participation in rehabilitation (either through a rehabilitation return to work coordinator or another person) can:

  • reduce disruption impacting productivity
  • reduce staff turnover
  • improve staff morale and workplace industrial relations
  • minimise retraining expenses
  • reduce claims costs and impact on premium
  • help a worker's return to the workplace.
Last updated
26 March 2014