188.8.131.52 WorkSafe can pay for
The Agent can pay for the following items in certain circumstances.
Clothing is not considered to be a compensable component of a WorkSafe claim.
If exceptional circumstances apply, some items of clothing may be compensable - for example, burns victims may need to wear light, cotton clothing.
It is not the responsibility of WorkSafe to supply regular footwear to workers. Footwear is not considered to be a compensable component of a WorkSafe claim.
If exceptional circumstances apply, footwear may be compensable where either:
- normal manufactured shoes are required to be modified because of the injury or
- specifically made shoes are required due to a foot injury.
If the purchase of footwear is approved, the worker may receive a maximum of one pair per claim generally, with the worker meeting the ongoing replacement costs.
Agents should consider:
- whether shock-absorbing insoles such as sorbothane would be more appropriate than the purchase of footwear.
- whether the treating medical practitioner has outlined the reasons for purchase of footwear, for example if a specific brand is recommended, why this is necessary.
- the reasonable contribution a worker may have to contribute towards the cost of the shoe, that is the amount the worker would normally spend on a pair of shoes.
- whether the provision of footwear will alter the patho-mechanics causing the pain.
- whether the worker already owns shoes that would meet the requirements.
- what the relationship between the request for footwear and the work-related An injury/disease is work related if it arose out of or in the course of employment and the scope of employment. injury is.
Where a worker requires a specific type of boot or shoe to accommodate an orthosis, for example, foot drop or shortening of the leg due to injury. Orthotic appliances can be supplied to workers whose injuries indicate this.
If orthotic footwear is to be supplied, the worker should forward documentation supporting the need for an orthotic device, including special footwear, from the treating medical practitioner or therapist (podiatrist Registered podiatrist means a person who is registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practise in the podiatry profession (other than as a student).).
Provision and replacement of orthotic devices and special footwear are approved on the recommendation of the treating medical practitioner, specialist, orthotist or podiatrist.
See: Prosthesis and orthotist services policy
Furniture and replacement furniture should only be considered for seriously injured workers and only in exceptional circumstances. Some items of furniture that are commonly requested are orthopaedic base and mattress sets, mattresses, support armchairs and electronically operated armchairs.
WorkSafe will consider paying for such items or modifications to existing items, as a direct consequence of the worker’s compensable injury, to offset the effects of the injury.
Written justification from the treating medical practitioner or occupational therapist / physiotherapist Registered physiotherapist means a person registered under the Health Practitioner Regulation National Law to practise in the physiotherapy profession (other than as a student). is required in support of the request.
When considering a worker’s request for the provision of such items:
- assess whether modifications to existing furniture are possible, for example bed boards should be looked at as an option before considering the purchase of beds and mattresses
- establish the reasonableness of the request
- consider the suitability, age and condition of the existing furniture
- ensure that an occupational therapist or physiotherapist has carried out an independent assessment outlining the worker’s need for these items
- ensure that the worker has obtained three quotations (these quotations should be for standard basic models and not for ‘top of the range’ items)
- ensure that the items are looked at using the contracted equipment list and contracted equipment supplier
- ensure that additional items such as bed heads, doonas, sheets and pillows (except pre-approved therapeutic pillows) are not part of the quotation as these items are not a compensable expense
- the item of furniture supplied to the worker is a similar item of furniture that they previously owned, for example, where a worker originally had a double bed and is now requesting a queen size bed, only the cost of a double bed is considered.
WorkSafe may in certain circumstances pay the reasonable cost of, or make a contribution to, the purchase of a:
- medical bed and related items
- companion bed or mattress for a medical bed
- non-medical beds and related items
OT Occupational therapy is a client-centred health profession concerned with promoting health and well being through occupation. The primary goal of occupational therapy is to enable people to participate in the activities of everyday life. Occupational therapists achieve this outcome by working with people and communities to enhance their ability to engage in the occupations they want to, need to or are expected to do or by modifying the occupation or the environment to better support their occupational engagement . assesses requirement of a new bed
The following should be considered by the occupational therapist when a new bed is recommended for a person with a back condition:
- What are the worker’s particular needs for an orthopaedic bed and the rationale for each specific feature?
- Is the need for the bed temporary or permanent?
- Are these features able to be provided by modifying the bed the worker was using before injury?
- Is there another bed in the house which meets the height and density requirements for best care of the worker’s backworker or could it be modified to do so?
- What was the brand, age and size of the bed the worker has replaced, that is, the bed on which they were sleeping before injury/spinal fusion?
- In summary, which is the bed or modification that provides for the worker’s needs?
See: Medical beds and related items policy
Personal computers and associated equipment are not considered a reasonable expense under WorkSafe.
A personal computer may be approved if the worker requires the computer for communication purposes and the worker cannot communicate in the normal way. The types of injuries that this may include are:
- acquired brain injury
- reduced arm function
- upper limb / hand amputation
- brachial plexus palsy.