Can An Injured Employee Work During Recovery?
Most states allow injured employees to work during their recovery, provided they and their employers meet certain conditions. Qualified medical personnel must certify that an employee is well enough to return to work. The employee’s physician may impose particular work restrictions on the individual, necessitating a temporary change in the worker’s duties or an agreement that allows the employee to work shorter hours while she recovers.
Some workers’ compensation insurance providers, including EMPLOYERS®, offer return to work programs that strive to minimize downtime, boost the injured worker’s morale and reduce claim costs. These programs have additional benefits, such as increasing productivity for an employer and encouraging faster recovery for a worker.
One particularly important benefit of returning to work is that it can prevent a worker from spiraling downward into long-term disability. Being back on the job is both beneficial to the employee and the employer.
Some states, such as California, offer incentives to employers who have return to work programs. These include vouchers, reimbursements and tiered disability payments.1 Another important benefit for all business owners is that return to work programs demonstrate a commitment to the well-being of employees. This translates into fewer performance issues and positive labor relations.
Here at EMPLOYERS, our Return to Work Program provides three basic services:
- Job Site Analysis: An on-site evaluation to help provide a detailed description of required technical skills and the physical requirements of a specific job.
- Ergonomic Evaluation: An on-site assessment of a specific job—or entire workplace—to evaluate the physical characteristics of the work area and how employees relate to their environment. The goal is to promote a workplace that is safe and efficient.
- Return-to-Work Coordination: Collaboration among the injured employee, employer and the treating physician can facilitate early return to work.
For more information about EMPLOYERS’ Return to Work Program or other services, contact us online or call us toll-free at 1-888-682-6671.