- Understand the general recovery timeframe for common work-related hand injuries, and be aware that each worker’s circumstances, and their injury, are unique.
- Keep in contact and attend case conferences with treating providers, so you can understand the worker’s individual treatment plan and timeframes and work together to identify solutions to potential barriers to an early, safe and durable return to work.
Why this is important
In Queensland, hands are one of the most common areas of the body to be injured, so it’s likely you’ll be required to facilitate rehabilitation and return to work for someone who has experienced a hand injury.
Wrist, hand, fingers and thumb injuries can occur in any industry and any workplace. These injuries include fractures, cuts and open wounds, as well as sprains and strains from awkward forces on the hand and wrist.
The type of injury and duties to be performed, fear of reinjury and lack of support can all impact on the success of the RTW plan and recovery at work.
- Return to work barrier series: Management of hand injuries video - hosted by Dr Soares, Orthopaedic Surgeon, and Amanda Mackillop, Occupational Therapist, who explore the recovery and management of commonly seen hand injuries.
- Hands, fingers, thumbs assessment and management of common hand injuries in general practice - details how to manage hand injuries and includes information about treatment types and timeframes. It’s a useful quick-reference resource for GPs.
- These resources from Safe Work Australia and Workplace Health and Safety Queensland will help you to address the risks of hand injuries associated with manual tasks.
- Hand tools and equipment can contribute to sprains and strains of hands. View the Hazardous manual tasks code of practice 2021 (PDF, 1.38 MB) for examples of good tool design.