188.8.131.52 Injury by gradual process | 184.108.40.206 Industrial deafness | 220.127.116.11 Diseases due to employment | 18.104.22.168 Proclaimed diseases | 22.214.171.124 Further injuries | 126.96.36.199 Differences between a continuation of a prior injury & further injuries | 188.8.131.52 Damage to things like appliances & clothing
A range of injuries and diseases have been specifically mentioned in the legislation with an explanation of the conditions that must exist for them to be compensable.
This is a special category of deemed compensable injury.
A worker or their dependants may be entitled to compensation irrespective of work contribution if their injury:
- has occurred gradually over time and
- is due to the nature of any employment in which the worker was employed prior to the giving of notice of injury.
The worker has to establish that the employment is of a type that either:
- has a tendency to cause the injury/disease or
- creates an inherent risk The probability of the worker not returning to work is known as the risk or risk factor. For example: if a worker is likely to return to work, the claim is categorised as low risk. of the occurrence of the injury or the contraction of the disease.
Exception for heart attacks and strokes
The legislation makes special provision for the compensation for industrial deafness.
See: Hearing loss
The legislation makes special provision for diseases due to employment. If the worker establishes that a contracted disease is due to the nature of any employment in which they were engaged prior the commencement of their incapacity, they are entitled to compensation irrespective of whether the employment actually caused their disease. The nature of the worker’s employment must give rise to a significantly greater risk of the worker contracting the disease than had the worker not been employed in employment of that nature to be compensable.
An exception to this is if the injury is a heart attack or stroke injury, which still must be significantly contributed to by employment to be compensable.
The Governor in Council may proclaim and publish in the Government Gazette certain diseases in relation to places, processes or occupations.
A worker or dependants of a worker with a proclaimed disease are entitled to compensation irrespective of whether work contributed to the disease unless WorkSafe proves that the disease was not due to employment.
It is optional that an independent medical examination in the appropriate speciality be arranged to confirm the presence of the disease.
List of proclaimed diseases
The following are proclaimed diseases under the legislation.
|Code No||Description of disease||Description of process or occupation||Rarity|
|822||Anthrax||Wool combing, wool sorting, handling of or coming into contact with hides, skins, wool, hair, bristles or carcasses, work in connection with animals infected with anthrax, loading and unloading or transport of merchandise.||Rare|
|302||Arsenic poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with arsenic or its preparations or compounds.||Rare|
|783||Asbestosis (with or without mesothelioma)||Any mining, manufacturing or other process which involves the use of or contact with asbestos.||Rare|
|599||Avascular Necrosis or its sequelae||Any occupation involving working underground or underwater where the worker is subjected to greater than normal atmospheric pressure and subsequent decompression.||Rare|
|823||Brucellosis (Undulant Fever)||Work in connection with animals or carcasses infected with the brucella organism.|
|302||Carbon bisulphide poisoning||Any manufacturing or other process involving working in contact with or the inhalation of carbon bisulphide gas.||Rare|
|302||Carbon monoxide poisoning||Any manufacturing or other process involving working in contact with or the inhalation of carbon monoxide gas.||Rare|
|759||Chrome ulceration or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with chromic acid or bichromate of ammonium potassium or sodium or their preparations.||Rare|
|302||Copper poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with copper or its preparation or compounds.||Rare|
|741||Dermatitis venenata||Any occupation involving the use of or contact with vegetable or mineral matter.|
|302||Lead poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with lead or its preparation or compounds.||Rare|
|825||Leptospirosis, as caused by any of the serotypes of the micro-organism Leptospira, in any of its clinical manifestations||Any work done at abattoirs, slaughterhouses and knackeries involving contact directly or indirectly with animals or tissues of animals.|
|988||Lung cancer with silicosis||Any manufacturing or other processes involving exposure to the inhalation of crystalline silica dust.|
|302||Mercury poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with mercury or its preparations or compounds.||Rare|
|Inj 179 (burns)
Inj 302 (other)
|Pathological manifestations due to radium and other radioactive substances or x-rays||Any process involving exposure to the action of radium, radioactive substances or x-rays.||Rare|
|302||Phosphorus poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with phosphorus or its preparation or compounds.||Rare|
|302||Poisoning by benzol, its homologues or its nitro and amido derivatives and the sequelae of these poisonings||Any process or occupation involving the production, liberation of or exposure to benzol its homologues or its nitro and amido derivatives.||Rare|
|302||Poisoning by the halogen derivatives of hydrocarbons of the aliphatic series||Any process or occupation involving the production liberation or utilisation of halogen derivatives of hydrocarbons of the aliphatic series.||Rare|
|841||Primary epitheliomatous cancer of the skin||Any process or occupation involving the handling of or use of tar, pitch, bitumen, mineral oil, paraffin, or the compounds, products or residues of those substances.|
|824||Q fever, as caused by micro-organism Coxiella burneti (also known as Rickettsia burneti) in any of its clinical manifestations||Any work done at abattoirs, slaughterhouses and knackeries involving contact directly or indirectly with animals or tissues of animals.|
|989||Scleroderma with silicosis||Any manufacturing or other processes involving exposure to the inhalation of crystalline silica dust.|
|839||Septic poisoning or its sequelae||Any work involving the handling of meat or the manufacture of meat products or animal products in connection with the trade of a butcher or slaughterman.|
|784||Silicosis with or without pulmonary tuberculosis||Any manufacturing or other processes involving exposure to the inhalation of silica dust.||Rare|
|526||Subcutaneous cellulitis or acute bursitis over the elbow (beat elbow)||Mining|
|526||Subcutaneous cellulitis or acute bursitis arising at or about the knee (beat knee)||Mining|
|526||Tenosynovitis (inflammation of the tendon sheaths of the hand, wrists, forearm or elbow)||Any process or occupation connected with the preparation preserving, canning or bottling of jams, sauces, fruits, pickles or other similar foods for human consumption.|
|302||Zinc poisoning or its sequelae||Any manufacturing or other process involving the use of or contact with zinc or its preparations or compounds.||Rare|
Sometimes, where a worker has a compensable injury and some progression of it occurs, an issue will arise as to the classification of that progression as a 'further injury' or a 'continuing injury'.
A further injury is an injury that is caused by a separate incident and results in a recurrence, aggravation, acceleration, exacerbation or deterioration of any pre-existing injury or disease.
For information about a worker’s obligation to disclose pre-existing injuries and diseases, refer to: Pre-existing injuries & diseases | Failure to disclose pre-existing injuries & diseases
Agents must register a new file
Agents must register a new file for all further injuries such as recurrences or aggravations of pre-existing injuries. The date of injury is recorded as the date of the recurrence or aggravation and not the date of the original injury.
Explanation of recurrence, aggravation, acceleration, exacerbation and deterioration
Judicial interpretations of these words might help Agents assess which claims are for further injuries and which are for continuing injuries:
- recurrence - causing an injury to occur again to the same degree
- aggravation - causing an injury to be more grave or serious
- acceleration - causing an injury to worsen more quickly
- exacerbation - causing an injury to have a heightened effect, with greater suffering or incapacity, though without worsening the underlying injury or disease itself
- deterioration - causing an injury to have new harmful or incapacitating symptoms.
A claim that is for a continuation of an original injury must be handled on the existing claim file.
A claim that relates solely to a prior compensable injury is treated as a continuation of the prior claim if:
- there was no accident or obvious period of risk directly before the onset of the symptom/s
- the activity was similar in nature or intensity to the usual activities that the worker does without harm.
Some of the major differences between a continuation of a prior injury and further injuries are summarised in Differences between a continuation of a prior injury & further injuries.
Example of a continuation of a prior condition
A carpenter cuts their hand at work and returns to work the next day. Later an infection develops in the cut which is not attributable to the present activities. The infection means further treatment is required and more time is lost. The further treatment and time lost are a continuation of the original injury and must be handled on the original claim file.
The following chart summarises the major points of difference between a continuation of a prior compensable injury and further injuries.
|Continuation of prior injury||Further injury
s125(4) & s125A(4) AC Act
s72(5) WIRC Act
No discernible contribution by employment.
No incident or period or risk directly before the onset of symptoms, or period of risk not much different from activities worker with the condition usually undertakes without harm.
|Contribution by employment caused symptoms because worker predisposed to further injury due to pre-existing injury. Pre-existing injury must be work-related.|
|Employer threshold to be paid||Yes||Authority assumes employer’s liability for initial expenses.|
|Claim||Same claim||New Claim|
If a worker broke an appliance or an aid during employment but was not injured, they are not entitled to compensation. If they sustained an injury they would be entitled to the reasonable cost of medical services received because of that injury.
WorkSafe does not pay for the replacement or repair of torn clothing.
If any of the defined compensable appliances or aids are supplied or made necessary because of the injury, then the Agent or the self-insurer is liable to pay the reasonable cost of providing, repairing, adjusting or replacement.
Compensable appliances or aids are defined in the legislation under the definition of medical service as:
- artificial members
- eyes or teeth
- spectacle glasses
- hearing aids.
The definition includes the provision, repair, adjustment and replacement of these services.
Agents can only pay reasonable costs for the above items.