Connecting Health & Productivity
The WorkRx ®: A work prescription (WorkRx®) is both a philosophy, as well as a practice. The WorkRx philosophy and practice affirm that:
● Health and productivity are connected
● Corporate, employee health and productivity factors can be merged into a practical plan, protecting the short and long term productivity for the employee and employer, alike.
A Corporate WorkRx ® guides an organization to more effectively control the impact of health and productivity issues within its work place. It starts with a corporate plan that organizes and directs its resources. The following suggestions can be incorporated in your organization’s WorkRx ®, offering solutions to common health and productivity predicaments.
Policies & Practices? Our organization has inconsistent and/or competing health and productivity policies & practices!
The common product of competing or fragments corporate policies is bureaugenic disability. That is, lost time created and/or reinforced by corporate policies and benefit programs.
The most common disability creating policy is the notion of 100% or nothing. That is, the employers determines the employee with an impairment cannot return to work unless they have recovered 100% work capacities and can do 100% of the job. The rationale for this appears to be the sense that if a person comes back less than 100% this will increase work related injuries. While possible, there is no data to suggest this actually occurs.
The following link offers sample corporate polices related to lost time management and return to work. Please consider molding these sample policies to your organization following a review by your corporate legal counsel.
A Policy that Works - Transitions Out and Back Transitional work is one of the most effective corporate strategies to control unnecessary lost time. Transitional work is not light duty. Light duty is open ended and static. Transitional work has a beginning and an end. Most transition programs are between 30 to 45 days with 12 weeks being the maximum time for any return to work transition.
Transitional work offers incremental steps toward full productivity embedded in a well developed WorkRx® (work prescription). The WorkRx® is a stay at work or return to work plan that molds the current treatment program with an incremental resumption of job demands and worker capacities
Elements of a WorkRx®
· Determine the current and/or projected functional impairments with the associated treatment to improve functional capacity
· Define the extent of duration of the functional impairments and the expected course of treatment
· Define work site accommodations that are required and possible
· Identify any employee relation issues that may be a RTW barrier
· Outline transitional work options and key benefit dates
· Communicate plan to the respective supervisor and physician
· Review WorkRx® bi-weekly or as appropriate in longer duration cases
· WorkRx is revised as appropriate in 30 day increments until at the point where the resumption of work is considered highly unlikely
Transitional Work (TW) Development Plan The following steps can be applied in the development of a transitional work program
· Make the business case to senior management – Defining the impact of lost time and the value of TW
· Define preferred model – targeting key employee groups with eligibility, starting and stopping guidelines.
· Communicate and coordinate with internal and external partners
· Integrate into benefit plan and labor contracts – Creating and applying incentives
· Roll out program in stages – Anticipate and deal with resistance
· Provide Manager/supervisor education program
· Connect with healthcare providers – Creating the WorkRx
· Create program to deal with the less than motivated employee
· Evaluate program in 30 day increments for first year, quarterly there after
Please visit the following links for sample transitional work models