Victoria unveils initiative to help injured employees return to work

New programme provides support for employees, employers

Victoria unveils initiative to help injured employees return to work

The Victoria government has announced the establishment of a new programme to help injured employees recover and get back to work.

The programme, called Return to Work Victoria, is tasked with promoting the effective occupational rehabilitation of injured workers and encouraging employers to provide suitable job opportunities for them.

It is also focused on identifying innovative injury prevention and return to work strategies, according to the government.

"These changes mean Victorian workers will continue to get the help they need, when they need it – while also making sure employers get the right support to keep their workers safe," said Minister for WorkSafe and the TAC Danny Pearson in a statement.

Return to Work Victoria will be headed by Jason Lardelli, who has been named executive director.

"Return to Work Victoria is a significant investment in improving outcomes for injured workers and supporting businesses to create safe and healthy workplaces," he said in a statement.

Improving return-to-work outcomes

The programme will also handle WorkSafe's claims management, recovery, and return-to-work functions to allow the agency to focus on prevention of workplace injuries.

"WorkSafe will continue to focus on preventing injuries from occurring in the first place, but when they do occur, Return to Work Victoria will be there to help injured workers recover, rehabilitate and return to work safely," said WorkSafe chief executive officer Joe Calafiore in a statement.

With an initial programme budget of $50 million for its first three years, Return to Work Victoria will also come up and trial new initiatives to improve return-to-work outcomes, which will be reviewed annually to ensure their efficiency.

"Establishing Return to Work Victoria delivers on our promise to provide dedicated support for workers that's focused on injury recovery and helping people return to work safely," Pearson said.

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