While preventing injuries is always the paramount objective, injuries must be managed when prevention fails. The Company strives to assist employees to return to work at the earliest possible date following an injury or illness. A return-to-work program has several benefits for both the employer and employees by minimizing time lost from work. One of the best ways to do that is to establish and implement a return-to-work (RTW) process for injured and ill workers. In most jurisdictions, RTW is recommended but not mandatory under workers’ comp laws. Nevertheless, the RTW process has proven highly beneficial for workers and cost-effective for employers.
OHS managers in any part of the country can adapt this Model Policy for use at their own workplace.
___________________ has adopted this Policy to establish a system for managing workplace injuries and illnesses and ensure that injured workers are given every opportunity to heal and return to work with the Company in their original or a comparable position as soon as possible.
The policy applies to regular full- and part-time employees who are on leave as a result of injury or illness and who are receiving workers’ compensation benefits.
The Human Resources Department has implemented a modified duty program. The program will assist in promoting a timely return to work of employees with work-related injuries/illnesses. The program will promote an early return to work and reduce the impact of Workplace Safety and Insurance costs.
For purposes of this Policy:
- “Accommodation” means adaptation of job duties, and may include adjustment or change to machinery or equipment, job content, work organization, or hours of work to facilitate the employment or re-employment of workers with temporary or permanent limitations to their abilities;
- “Alternative work” means work that is different from the worker’s pre- injury job duties;
- “Board” means the [list name of your jurisdiction’s Workers’ Compensation Board];
- “Duty to accommodate” means the legal responsibility of ABC Company under the [list jurisdiction] Human Rights Act (“Human Rights Act”) to take all reasonable steps to place a worker with a physical or mental disability in a position that accommodates the worker’s medical restrictions—whether attributable to occupational or non-occupational injuries or illness—to the point of undue hardship;
- “Modified Duty” is the modification of an employee’s position that allows for the employee to carry out some of (or all) the work assigned within the employees’ capabilities…