HRD forum is the place for positive industry interaction and welcomes your professional and informed opinion.

Accompanying injured staff to doctor is intrusive

Notify me of new replies via email
HC Online | 28 Mar 2012, 12:02 AM Agree 0
HR at Australia’s biggest construction materials supplier has been advised to cease its practice of sending a supervisor to accompany injured staff members into doctors’ consulting rooms.
  • Peter | 29 Mar 2012, 01:16 PM Agree 0
    Boral hold the line. Is the treatment about anything else other than the injury, No. Is there a likely hood that questions will be raised about care and alternative duties, Yes.
    Is the injured person always able take and provide this detail,No.
    Employs should be there, but the treatment should only be about the injury nothing else.
  • Sonia | 03 Apr 2012, 10:43 AM Agree 0
    Caring about someone you work with who is injured is healthy, so making sure they get to proper medical attention is not intrusive. It is probably not necessary to attend the treatment but to be present to answer questions from the Medical professional is a good idea. For goodness sake, if a person who is injured does not have the capacity to say no to being accompanied, then it is quite serious an injury and further harm may come to the individual on the way to medical treatment, so it makes sense to have them be accompanied. I cant see that Boral is invading anyones privacy by caring about their injured employee enough to make sure they are treated properly for any injury. If the case were the opposite such that an injured employee was left to seek medical attention on their own with no assistance then I would think there was a case of serious neglect or care.
  • Sonia #2 | 03 Apr 2012, 01:52 PM Agree 0
    Accompany an employee to the service provider by all means for support and to make sure employee arrives safely. Stay outside while employee consults the service provider. If the provider knows there is someone waiting for employee, they will usually talk to the other person if they feel that something is to be gained by doings so e.g. additional info about incident, someone to look after the employee after treatment. The question of alternative duties can be followed up in due course by a rehabilitation and return to work co-ordinator if need be.
  • Graeme | 18 Jun 2014, 10:07 AM Agree 0
    I recently suffered a double hernia as a result of a demotion ( adverse action) by my employer. My employers representative attended all my doctors appointments. On one occasion they directed the doctor to make changes to the medical certificate. I was forced to go back to see the doctor latter that day to inform him that he had made a mistake on the certificate. He promptly rectified the mistake but had I not acted quickly it would of resulted in my loss of workers compensation.
    It's interesting that My employer is a large Austraian owned operation similar to Boral.
    I don't think that any employer has a right to exert undue influence on a treating doctor,as was the case for me.
  • Dean | 01 Jul 2014, 06:06 PM Agree 0
    Whilst I don't condone employer representatives sitting in on the medical consultation with the injured worker (where highly sensitive personal details might be discussed), there is definitely a benefit for both the worker and the employer by having the employer representative enter the room at the end of the consultation.

    This allows the employer to ensure that the doctor has sufficient information about alternative duties that are available within the workplace to accommodate the injured worker. There is no benefit to an injured worker sitting at home due to a risk-averse doctor, or a medical certificate written without sufficient input from both parties.

    I have had a 9-month workers compensation injury in the past, and my recovery was greatly improved by the ability for me to remain part of the workplace even if I couldn't perform my pre-injury duties. On many occasions I had to assertively instruct my treating doctor to remove restrictions from my medical certificate to suit my capabilities, as my employer was reluctant to let me perform tasks that contradicted my medical certificate.
  • Ronnie | 02 Jul 2014, 01:58 PM Agree 0
    I agree with Peter and Sonia wholeheartedly. If an employer didn't take the employee to the doctor the employer would be accused of lack of duty of care. The employer is the one capable of detailing what is involved in the job and what light duties are available if required. Support is what is required and being given by Boral. Keep it up Boral employees need to be supported and if the employee cannot make a decision because they are vulnerable, all the more reason for support.
Post a reply