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Here's what you need to know about WorksafeBC

The Report: December 2010 vol.31 num.6

DELEGATES TO THE 2010 HSA CONVENTION in Vancouver asked a number of questions about WorksafeBC.

What are the most common injuries for HSA members and are we reducing the number of time loss incidents?

The most common injuries are repetitive strain and injuries related to lifting or positing patients and clients. In most work areas slips and falls are near the top, but in healthcare and social services, injuries resulting from violent or agressive patients and clients ranks higher. While the numbers fluctuate from year to year, it is disturbing to note that there is a trend toward an increase in the average duration of time lost per claim.

If my WorksafeBC claim is approved, what percentage of my salary will I receive?

WorksafeBC pays 90 per cent of your net pay, with a maximum insurable salary amount of $71,200 per year.

Can I make a claim even though my injury is not the result of a specific incident?

Yes. For example, repetitive strain injuries occur over time, as can some exposures. If a worker has symptoms they attribute to work duties they should see their physician and file a claim accordingly.

Who is the first person you should see if you think your injury should be covered by WorksafeBC?

If you have a serious injury, get first aid or seek emergency medical attention. If its not an emergency, see your doctor. Finally, report it as a workplace injury, and make sure you notify your supervisor as soon as possible.

To apply for WorksafeBC coverage you must fill out a -Form 6" Application for Compensation which is usually available at work or from your doctors office. You can also find it on line at worksafeBC.com.

Try to seek any medical attention within three days; otherwise WorksafeBC may view this as an undue delay in reporting.

Can WorksafeBC prevent a worker from taking prescheduled vacation if they are on claim?

Once on a claim, workers must be available for appropriate treatment or rehabilitation. However, if a worker is not likely to be able to return to work within the time in question and isnt partaking in activities which could give the impression they are more fit that claimed, there is no reason they cant take vacation. We would advise members always to check with their WorksafeBC contact person.

What should I advise co-workers if they re-injure themselves at work after a graduated return to work?

Employees should immediately report the incident to their supervisor and seek medical attention (see previous question). It is important that you provide a very clear description of the incident as this may determine whether it will be treated as a new claim or reopened as a previous claim.

If WorksafeBC denies a claim should we contact HSA?

Yes. We provide assistance in appeals of WorksafeBC decisions. It is important to contact us early as there is a 90 day period in which appeals must be filed following a denial letter. For more information on this, please contact Jenny Fujita at jfujita@hsabc.org or 604-439-0994.

Do you have other questions relating to occupational health and safety in your workplace? Contact Marty Lovick at mlovick@hsabc.org

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