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Roles and responsibilities - rehabilitation

Senior manager

  • Ensure your organisation complies with the Guidelines for rehabilitation authorities (the Guidelines) issued under section 41 of the Safety, Rehabilitation and Compensation Act 1988 (SRC Act).
  • Show visible commitment to implementing your organisation’s rehabilitation policy effectively.
  • Develop a workplace culture that prevents injuries and supports injured employees.
  • Support your case managers in performing their duties and achieving positive early intervention outcomes.
  • Monitor your organisation’s return to work performance—including your organisation’s claim costs and return to work outcomes—identify problems and set the direction to address any identified issues.
  • Review and improve your organisation’s return to work strategies.


  • Foster a workplace that encourages and supports safe work practices and the early reporting of injuries.
  • Advise the case manager when you become aware of an injury.
  • Take steps to prevent further injuries by understanding their causes and putting safeguards in place.
  • Keep contact with the injured employee to support and identify available assistance to help with returning the injured employee to work.
  • Identify suitable duties with the case manager while continuing to support the injured employee.
  • Change or modify the work and environment for the injured employee.
  • Contribute to developing the return to work plan for the injured employee and promptly let the case manager know if you, the injured employee or co-workers have any concerns.
  • When the injured employee returns to the workplace, work with them to ensure their return to work is durable.

Injured employee

  • Find out about your organisation’s rehabilitation policy.
  • Let your supervisor or case manager know if you are going to be away from work for an extended period because of your work-related injury.
  • Undergo an assessment for rehabilitation if required.
  • Talk to your case manager about your obligations and rights regarding rehabilitation.
  • Participate in your return to work program.
  • Talk to your case manager or rehabilitation provider if you have any concerns about your return to work plan.

Case manager

  • Talk with staff about your role and how to contact you.
  • Consult with all relevant parties to initiate, coordinate and monitor the rehabilitation process.
  • Decide if an assessment for a return to work program is required—particularly if an employee is likely to be away from work for more than 10 days (section 36, SRC Act).
  • Organise the return to work program—you may need to contract an approved workplace rehabilitation provider (WRP) to develop the return to work plan (section 37, SRC Act).
  • Manage the WRP to implement a quality and cost-effective program.
  • Write to the injured employee indicating any decisions you make about a rehabilitation assessment or return to work plan.
  • Manage the rehabilitation program to achieve a successful return to work.
  • Work with the supervisor and WRP to provide the injured employee with suitable employment (section 40, SRC Act).
  • Make sure your organisation complies with the Guidelines issued by Comcare (section 41, SRC Act).

Workplace Rehabilitation Provider (WRP)

  • Provide expert, objective advice to the case manager to assist the timely, safe and durable return to work of an injured employee.
  • Promptly respond to referrals and other requests as outlined in Comcare’s Criteria and operational standards for workplace rehabilitation providers 2015.
  • Engage the injured employee, treating doctor and supervisor in developing and implementing a tailored return to work plan.
  • Monitor the return to work plan and regularly communicate with all parties to ensure goals are being achieved.
  • Ensure you comply with Comcare’s criteria and standards for approved workplace rehabilitation providers.

Medical practitioner

  • Provide treatment to the injured employee.
  • Provide accurate medical assessments and advice throughout the return to work process.
  • Provide advice on alternative duties or workplace modifications.
  • Inform the case manager or WRP of the injured employee’s capacity to perform tailored duties.
  • Monitor and support the progress of returning the injured employee to work.
  • Be available and accessible for case conferences or workplace visits.

Claims manager

  • Make accurate and timely decisions on claims for compensation.
  • Process the injured employee’s entitlements quickly and accurately.
  • Manage the injured employee’s claim effectively—liaising with the injured employee, their doctor, the employer, the case manager and WRP.
  • Support the return to work process.

For further information on roles and responsibilities in relation to rehabilitation please see the Return to Work - easy reference guide.

You can also view the Back to work, Back to team infographic which outlines practical actions supervisors and co-workers can take to support a team member following injury.

Page last updated: 14 Aug 2019