Plan ahead for accidents with a workplace injury management service

Some jobs are naturally more dangerous than others. But whether you’re a construction worker or an accountant – all workplaces have hazards that can pose a threat to employee safety.

There are thousands of workers in South Africa who are injured on the job each year. Some injuries are minor, some more severe, but many result in employees taking time off work and most require a level of administration and support from an employer.

“Companies count the cost of occupational injuries through lost productivity and business interruption,” says Rikus Scheepers, managing director at Accisure. “But they may not realise how time-consuming individual case management can be or the challenges of administrative follow-ups with authorities and COID.”

COID is the Compensation for Occupational Injuries and Diseases Act that was established to compensate employees or their families, where injury, disease or death occurs on company time. All businesses in South Africa are legally required to register with the Act.

It is the responsibility of each business owner to ensure that their company is registered and compliant, in order to make a claim for an injured employee. In addition, they need in-depth knowledge of COID and must understand the logistical processes, legal requirements and necessary procedures to follow in the event of a workplace incident.

Even when a business has been responsible and has registered new employees with COID, if done incorrectly it can lead to non-compliance. Not only does this result in employees not being covered when a workplace incident occurs, but the business will also not be eligible for a Letter of Good Standing and this can impact their ability to apply for contracts or tenders.

“Non-compliance is one issue but even if all COID obligations are met, it’s easy to feel overwhelmed by the legalities, the various roles and responsibilities, and the burden of correctly completing and submitting all required forms – within the correct timeframe – after a workplace incident. On top of that, the well-being of the injured employee should still remain a priority,” says Scheepers.

While being COID compliant and reducing workplace injuries ought to be at the top of an employer’s list, by their very nature, accidents will continue to happen. This is why it’s key to plan ahead and also implement an effective workplace injury management service.

Through workplace injury management, all incidents are handled on behalf of the company. This includes time-consuming legal and administration requirements, in addition to full logistical case management for the injured worker. Not only does this minimise business interruption but the individual support for injured staff members enables them to recover faster and return to work sooner.

“For the wellbeing of staff members and for the continuity of business operations, it’s key that employers meet their COID obligations and implement injury management to ensure that workers receive the best medical care possible when they need it most,” says Scheepers.