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									Network occupational therapy
Information for Medical Practitioners


The Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and WorkSafe Victoria (WorkSafe) are committed to
achieving better health and return to work outcomes for injured Victorians.
As part of this commitment, TAC and WorkSafe have established a group of occupational
therapists to work with TAC clients and injured workers. These occupational therapists are called
network occupational therapists.
Network occupational therapists have skills and experience in treating transport accident-related
and work-related injuries and illnesses. They aim to help TAC clients and injured workers
maximise their participation and independence in activities at home, work or school, and in the
community.
They will use a variety of strategies to achieve this, including:

-       assessing the level of help or care that may be required as a result of your patient’s injury or
        illness
-       recommending exercises to maximise their function and promote recovery from injury (where
        possible)
-       advising of adaptive and/or alternative techniques to make it easier for your patient to perform
        activities. For example, breaking strenuous tasks to smaller more manageable tasks
-       prescribing equipment that will help to maximise their independence, and
-       recommending modifications to your patient’s work or home environment to maximise their
        independence and participation. For example, installing a rail in a bathroom.

Network occupational therapy services do not replace general (non-network) occupational therapy
services. You can continue to refer TAC clients and injured workers to general occupational
therapists.


WHO CAN BE TREATED?
You should consider network occupational therapy services for patients who:
    −   have an accepted TAC or WorkSafe claim
    −   have an injury or illness that affects their ability to participate in and independently perform
        everyday activities
    −   require assistance to perform their everyday activities, and
    −   require equipment or modification to their work or home environment to facilitate greater
        independence and participation in everyday activities.
BENEFITS FOR YOUR PATIENT
Network occupational therapists can provide your patient with the following benefits:
−   access to an occupational therapist with skills and experience in helping to rehabilitate TAC
    clients and injured workers and assist them to stay at or get back to work or their daily routine
−   an appointment offered within 10 days of approval by the TAC or WorkSafe Agent
−   comprehensive and coordinated treatment. The network occupational therapist will
    communicate and work with you and other treating healthcare professionals involved in your
    patient’s care
−   guidance and clear explanations about TAC and WorkSafe policies and procedures, and
−   no out-of-pocket costs as the TAC or WorkSafe Agent will be billed directly for the assessment
    and treatment if your patient has an approved claim.


BENEFITS FOR YOU
Network occupational therapists can provide you with the following benefits:
−   comprehensive assessment of your patient’s need for equipment and support services
−   identification of the appropriate time for referral to occupational rehabilitation or vocational
    providers to help your patient to stay at or return to work
−   regular communication with you about your patient’s recovery and progress, and continued
    involvement in your patient’s management, and
−   the network occupational therapist will bill the TAC or WorkSafe Agent directly.



MAKING A REFERRAL
If you would like to refer your patient to a network occupational therapist in your local area, please
refer to the list of providers on our websites at tac.vic.gov.au or worksafe.vic.gov.au.
For injured workers, you will need to write a referral letter to the relevant occupational therapist
specifying your patient’s injury and the anticipated goals and outcomes of treatment for your
patient.
Please note that for injured workers, a network occupational therapist can only accept referrals
from a registered medical practitioner. This is not necessary for TAC clients.


FOR MORE INFORMATION
If you’d like more information about network occupational therapists please:
−   phone the TAC on 1300 654 329 or visit tac.vic.gov.au, or
−   call the WorkSafe Advisory Service on freecall 1800 136 089 or (03) 9641 1444, email
    info@worksafe.vic.gov.au or visit worksafe.vic.gov.au

								
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