At Adaptive Workplace Solutions we offer Physiotherapy treatment services specifically tailored to return to work and function. We understand the benefits that can be gained from a Physiotherapist with a strong understanding of the return to work system.
These benefits include:
Highly specialised assessments and management plans:
- Initial assessments are more than a standard biomedical tick-list. The Physiotherapist will give the client time to explain their story, and active listening approaches allow the client to feel properly heard;
- Appropriate psychosocial outcome measures taken, with specialised knowledge in addressing factors such as maladaptive pain beliefs and behaviours, lifestyle factors, stress, and unhelpful thinking styles;
- The initial physical assessment will focus on physical tolerance and capacity, rather than taking the biomedical diagnostic approach. The approach taken is that of a mini-Functional Capacity Evaluation (mini-FCE), where a select few tasks are chosen that are specifically relevant to the client’s type of employment or functional needs and they are safely taken through testing to find their maximum tolerance;
- Functional outcome measures are based on the mini-FCE, for example, if the client needs to return to a role with frequent (between 30-60% of workday, or more than 100 repetitions) 3kg pull/pushing forces, then the functional outcome measure will be their ability to perform 100 push/pull movements with 3kg over the 30-minute Physiotherapy session;
- Understanding of the benefits of consulting worksite assessment reports or performing worksite visits for establishing pre-injury duties, and structuring management toward these tasks.
Active and goal-focused treatment approach:
- Exercise management always commences from the first session;
- Emphasis is placed on day-to-day activity levels and tasks, not only on the 10 minutes of home exercises prescribed;
- Plans will always aim towards self-management and education;
- Strong background in musculoskeletal Physiotherapy, Pilates and gym-based exercise training, with a background in working closely with Exercise Physiologists;
- Flexibility to attend the client’s home, gym, or chosen pool to teach a self-management program. Too often the main barrier for a client in completing their self-management is that the environment in which they are taught is too different to their actual training environment;
- All management will incorporate elements of pain education;
- Training in mindful movement approaches to re-engage the client with their body without fear, and with compassion.
Strong understanding of the return to work system:
- Awareness of return-to-work timeframes;
- Detailed knowledge of other relevant services available to clients;
- Knowledge of the common barriers in return to work or return to function and how these may be addressed;
- A critical approach is taken when symptoms and tolerances are not aligning with the clinical picture. There are multiple potential reasons for this including psychosocial factors and these will be assessed, and communicated as deemed necessary;
- Confidence in the central role that Physiotherapy can play in the return to work/function process when fully engaged with the client and their team.
Active communication with all parties:
- Open communication with the claims agent around the functional and return to work goals of Physiotherapy management;
- Continual re-testing of physical capacity and communication with the client’s General Practitioner when it is possible that medical capacity may be upgraded;
- Communication with other members of the treatment team where appropriate and initiative to propose case conferences when barriers are restricting progress.