Reassure the employee that work is healthy

Explain to the employee how recovering at work or returning to work are safe and healthy approaches that are highly beneficial in many ways (physically, socially, mentally, and financially).

Focus on what the employee can do at work, not what they can’t

Start by understanding the employee’s work environment and job demands – ask the employer for functional job demands of the employee’s position.

Perform a functional abilities assessment on the employee and compare that to the job demands. What can the employee do safely?

Identify transitional work

As part of the employee’s support team, work with the employer and the WCB case worker to identify essential job tasks that could be modified so the employee can do them safely, or meaningful alternate work the employee can do while recovering. Request a worksite visit if necessary to reassure the employee and employer that the transitional work is suitable and safe.

Follow a treatment plan

Develop a goal-oriented treatment plan with regular check-in points where you can reassess the employee’s progress. Share the progress with the employee’s physician/nurse practitioner and their employer (functional information only). Use this information to revisit and revise the transitional work.

Keep in touch with the WCB

In addition to your formal reporting obligations with the WCB, ensure you are communicating with the case worker to discuss any claim related issues that need to be addressed in a timely manner to support the worker's return to work journey.