WorkSafe will be receiving $300 million from the government of Victoria to ensure that the current premium rate is maintained to help injured workers to get support consistently. In a media release, the state has announced that the average target premium rate will stay at 1.272% of the remuneration for the 2022-23 premium year.
”The global pandemic has been disruptive for workers and businesses, and WorkSafe hasn’t been immune to this. Volatility in international markets has affected WorkSafe’s financial projections compared to last year – on top of the existing pressure from complex claims, especially for mental injuries. The government is ensuring the scheme remains sustainable, with work underway to better prevent injuries, increase support for injured workers, and improve tailored claims handling,” as reported in the media release.
Key reforms have also been introduced to the WorkCover scheme as part of its implementation of changes after an independent review revealed some areas for improvement with the management of “complex claims.”
These reforms will transform the scheme to address better modern workplace injuries, particularly mental injuries – which can be harder to identify and require unique supports and recovery pathways. WorkSafe accordingly will expand its Claims and Recovery Support Team to focus on specialised interventions for these more complex claims.
The state has also pledged to continue the development of better psychological health regulations to prevent psychological harm in the workplace through initiatives such as the WorkSafe’s Mental Health Strategy 2021-24 and year one Action Plan, which guides “the significant reform work already underway to establish mentally healthy workplaces” through its $50 million WorkWell programs. This helps employers to create mentally healthy workplaces through funded projects, learning networks and a soon to be expanded online toolkit.