Performance Thinking

Expert information and solutions for your business.

Winter 2011

10 Best Practices for Handling Workplace Injuries

Jim Redmond, VP Risk Performance, Scott Insurance

Do you have guidelines for handling workplace injuries? Are those guidelines followed consistently for all employees and all injuries? Do employees understand company policies surrounding reporting an injury? To avoid contentious situations and workers’ comp problems, have procedures in place and properly communicated to your employees BEFORE an injury occurs.

  1. Set Expectations in Advance.
    Make it clear to employees before an injury occurs how it will be handle. They’ll need to know who the internal contact is, what the reporting procedures are, what forms must be completed, where they should go for treatment, and what the company’s return to work plan is. This information should be presented at orientation and reinforced every 12-18 months.
  2. Have Clear Accident/Injury Reporting Procedures.
    Have a clearly written policy that takes a very conservative approach to injury reporting. It is best to widen the scope of what is reported and then you can decide how to handle each situation – in a report only, fi rst aid or a doctor visit. When training, you might use examples of unacceptable reporting practices such as calling in on Monday to report a Friday injury or leaving work after an injury without telling a supervisor.