Benefits of OHSW in your business
Creating a safe work environment is a legal requirement. It’s also critical to the long term success of your business and can:
- help you keep your staff
- improve staff productivity
- reduce injury and illness in the workplace
- reduce the costs of injury and workers’ compensation
What you must do
Under Australian OHSW laws your business must ensure the health and safety of your workers and not put the health and safety of other people at risk. To do this you must:
- provide a safe work environment
- provide and maintain safe machinery and structures
- provide safe ways of working
- ensure safe use, handling and storage of machinery, structures and substances
- provide and maintain adequate facilities
- provide any information, training, instruction or supervision needed for safety
- monitor the health of workers and conditions at the workplace
Our OHSW related services include:
Manual Handling training
Manual handling tasks are responsible for 45 per cent of compensable injuries within Australian workplaces. Two thirds of back injuries are attributed to poor manual handling skills. The aim of our manual handling program is to create a customised and job specific manual handling program, with an emphasis on empowering workers to apply a
risk reduction mindset to every facet of their working day.
A hazardous manual task, as defined by Safe Work Australia, means a task that requires a person to lift, lower, push, pull, carry or otherwise move, hold or restrain any person, animal or thing involving one or more of the following:
- Repetitive or sustained force
- High or sudden force
- Repetitive movement
- Sustained or awkward posture
- Exposure to vibration
Living to the Max Occupational Therapy looks at prevention through effective and practical manual handling training coupled with the proper use of injury prevention techniques such as:
- Joint/limb stretches and exercises
- The use of workable ergonomics in the home and workplace
- Analysis of work tasks and strategies to reduce the risk of injury
Our primary focus is to supply you and your employees with the necessary prevention techniques and tools to eliminate the risks before it is too late. For us, it is important that you have the knowledge to apply this information so that you can prevent the pain, suffering and debilitation associated with workplace injuries.
Our training is designed for people who are required to carry out manual handling in their day-to-day work and can be fully customised to ensure its relevance to your business requirements. Typically though the training will cover topics including:
- Risk assessments and risk management
- Legislation, standards and code of practice
- Consequences of poor manual handling
- Planning and workplace procedures
- Safe manual handling principles and techniques
Manual handling training for Support Workers/Carers
This training has been specifically developed for those who work as support workers or carers, in particular for those who are required to perform manual person transfers. The session is up to 3 hours in total and is split into 2 parts.
First, there is some theory to go over and this is done in the usual presentation format using AV equipment and anatomy props. The theory topics include:
- Motivation for workplace safety
- Understanding the body anatomy
- An overview of manual handling principles
There is also an optional topic called ‘Risk control’ which helps carers to identify potential risks in client’s homes. This adds 30 mins to the session if you would like to include this option.
Following the theory session, we cover practical demonstrations to enable staff to practice the theory. The practical demonstrations include:
- Non-ambulant manual handling demonstration:
- How to transfer a person to and from a wheelchair
- How to transfer someone to and from a bed
- How to get a person off the floor using a hoist and sling
- Ambulant mobility manual handling demonstration
- How to assist a person to stand from the floor
- How to assist a person to stand from sitting
- How to assist a person to walk
- Safe wheelchair use
We have access to a suitable training facility with the necessary equipment to undertake the practical component however if you have a suitable venue, we can certainly undertake the training at your preferred location. The equipment required for the training includes:
- AV equipment to accommodate a PowerPoint presentation with sound
- Mobile hoist
- A selection of slings
- Electric bed + mattress
- Utility chair
Ergonomic workstation assessments
Poor workstation posture is the underlying cause of many musculoskeletal disorders. It is therefore essential that workstations and associated accessories are customised as much as possible to avoid or reduce the risk of pain and injury.
At Living to the Max Occupational Therapy, our ergonomic assessments can be provided for a single employee, a particular work group or for the whole organisation. All ergonomic assessments are performed by qualified Occupational Therapists with extensive experience in workplace safety. All our assessments include a detailed report on key assessment findings, current or potential injuries and proposed recommendations.
We can offer a number of different options to cater for both small and large businesses, from group sessions to highly customised individual assessments. These include:
1. Group session
These sessions are suited to larger groups of workers needing general ergonomic advice. Our Occupational Therapist will facilitate the training session which covers the importance of postural awareness, the basics of correct ergonomic setup and common injuries and faults. The aim of these sessions is for employees to return to their workstations and make the necessary corrections based on what they have learnt. We can also visit each of their individual workstations to answer any further queries they might have or to check the modifications they have made. A list of recommended aids or equipment (if required) will be provided to management.
2. Individual Assessments
Our group workstation assessments take up to 30 minutes per employee and are focused on prevention. These assessments are best suited to employees not currently experiencing any symptoms or those with only minor issues. Our Occupational Therapist will review the individual and their workstation, identify any issues, modify the workstation (if required) to minimise risk of injury and provide recommendations in terms of self-management strategies, ergonomic accessories and safe work practices. A brief report is provided to management documenting current issues, recommendations and changes implemented.
3. Customised assessment (one-on-one)
These ergonomic assessments are recommended for those employees who are experiencing pain, discomfort or associated symptoms of poor ergonomic practices. Our Occupational Therapist is able to perform one-on-one assessments to identify risk factors, past injuries and underlying causes of advised symptoms. We are then able to provide recommendations on appropriate intervention. Our primary aim is to resolve and/or significantly improve symptoms when at work and prevent the likelihood of aggravation re-occurring. The assessment includes a detailed report to management on current issues and hazards, advice given to employee, changes made to workstation, any associated symptoms of poor ergonomic practices. Our Occupational Therapist is able to perform one-on-one assessments to identify risk factors, past injuries and underlying causes of advised symptoms. We are then able to provide recommendations on appropriate intervention. Our primary aim is to resolve and/or significantly improve symptoms when at work and prevent the likelihood of aggravation re-occurring. The assessment includes a detailed report to management on current issues and hazards, advice given to employee, changes made to workstation, any ergonomic accessories needed, details of current injuries and aggravating factors and any necessary referrals.
4. Home office ergonomic assessment
All employers have a duty of care under current legislation to provide a safe workplace for their employees. If an employee is undertaking approved work from home, this includes their home office. This level of assessment ensures your workers home office has been assessed for ergonomic risk factors. Depending on the current status of the employee, we can undertake an assessment based on either the group assessment or customised assessment.
We welcome your enquiry to discuss your ergonomic requirements.
Disability access for business
Almost 4 million Australians have a disability and about half of people aged over 55 have difficulty with their mobility, hearing or vision. If we add their families, friends and colleagues the number of people affected by disability is exponentially larger. Each of these people is a potential customer, client and employee.
Accessible buildings for both employees and customers not only makes good business sense,
it also helps businesses and service providers to meet existing legal responsibilities under discrimination law. Further information about your obligations can be found in the disability standards for premises section on the Attorney-General’s department website.
At Living to the Max Occupational Therapy, we can assess your workplace or business and discuss with you, your obligations under the Disability Discrimination Act 1992 and associated disability standards for premises. We can then provide you with the necessary recommendations and, as occupational therapists, we are fully qualified to design building modifications to enhance disability access, all to Australian standards. These may include:
- Access ramps
- Wheelchair accessible toilets, entries and doorways
- Lifts and hoists
In the case of employing someone with a disability, you may be eligible for a free audit through the Australian Government’s JobAccess initiative.
As a starting point, we have outlined below some questions you might consider before deciding whether to proceed with more formal intervention.
- Does your workplace have a disabled toilet available for customers or employees?
- Is there seating available, is there a designated area for disabled persons?
- Is the lighting bright enough to assist the vision-impaired?
- Are your staff trained in how to assist disabled customers?
- Is the path or area near your entrance accessible to people in wheelchairs?
- Has a lift or ramp been installed?
- Are their disabled parking spaces available near your place of business?
- Is the signage in your workplace clear and large enough for vision impaired customers and employees to read?
- Does the design of your workplace allow disabled customers to easily find assistance when needed?
Supported Accommodation Assessments
We can determine your support & accommodation needs, including Specialist Disability Accommodation (SDA) needs.
Wheelchair seating & postural assessments
SA's leading expert in posture management & seating for those with complex disabilities & spinal injuries.
Manual person transfer assessments & plans
Pressure care management
We can help with the prevention & management of pressure ulcers.
Hospital Discharge Planning
Neurological Rehabilitation & Therapy
We specialise in manual handling, carer training & disability access for businesses & commercial settings
Functional Capacity Assessments
We can assess your ability to function from day to day & prepare a plan to maximise your independence.
A full range of assessment & therapy services are available in-clinic. Hoist transfers available.
Mental Health, Autism & Sensory Processing
We understand the challenges as they relate to mental illness, autism and sensory processing, and we’re here to help.
You choose. In-home, In-clinic or Virtual Appointments Available.
Or call (08) 8331 0566