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Jeremy Clay, McNab, Wilston

Winner of 2016 Queensland Safe Work Awards

Category thirteen – Demonstrated leadership in rehabilitation and return to work

Jeremy Clay is the Health Safety Environmental and Quality Coordinator for McNab, which operates in a high risk construction environment with projects involving the use of subcontractors. Jeremy developed the 'Injured Worker Pack' for the employer (if not McNab), injured worker and doctor to assist all the stakeholders with the return to work process. He has also developed supervisor training (including subcontractors), a corrective actions reports register and a job dictionary as a result of some subcontractors not receiving training in the return to work process. These resources are available to managers, workers, subcontractors and their employers, and anyone else in McNab's supply chain.

Jeremy engaged experts, colleagues and senior management develop and to roll out his initiatives. McNab's WorkCover premiums have been falling year on year from a solid injury management platform to now less than 25 per cent of the industry rate.

McNab's human resources manager stated that Jeremy 'is prepared to lead by example, demonstrating a passion for proactively managing work injuries, while delicately balancing the personal and commercial implications of such circumstances'.

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On screen text

Jeremy Clay, McNab- Safe Work and Return to Work Awards 2016

My name is Jeremy Clay. I am the health safety quality environmental coordinator for McNab constructions. McNab construction is a construction company so we service industrial, educational and civil construction. We have about 200 employees and we reach between 2,000 and 4,000 sub-contractor employees. My personal philosophy is is that injury is not part of the job and that people who return to work recover quicker. People who return to work quicker actually have reduction in their injury management time so work is actually good for them. They return to work, they feel better. The most important thing to do is get an injured worker back with their peer network.

We encourage workers to participate in their return to work process by providing a clear direction about the injury management, providing a new by medical centre that we know that they are going to get the treatment they need and also providing an injured worker pack that's available right next to the first aid kit. It's the first thing to grab when you assess that that worker needs to go to a medical centre for review.

One of the roadblocks we found is that not all workers can access work cover for whatever employment reason. They might not be directly employed by an employer so we also pay for the first consult for our sub-contractors as well. With that comes direct reduction in our insurance premium so the industry average in the construction industry is about 2.3 per cent. We've managed to reduce that to now only half a percent. Reduction of injuries overall is going to increase our productivity, so it's number one saving in time and cost will be beneficial in all avenues including our rehabilitation and return to work.

My advice to other return to work coordinators is to understand what the job requirements are, put those down into a job dictionary and get some assistance from an external party to formalize that. Understanding that there's this person who's injured, that you're helping them on their journey to get well again is very beneficial. Also, learning about injuries, how to best treat them and so forth, I find personally rewarding as well.RUN TIME: 2 min 19 sec