Worksafe’s approach to Telehealth services of your treating doctors and specialists and providers, in light of COVID -19Published on Posted on
Please note that this post was written for Victorian audiences and the information within may not apply to other regions.
In response to the strict social distancing measures currently imposed on Victorians, WorkSafe has introduced temporary item codes allowing medical practitioners, specialists, and providers, to deliver essential health services for injured workers, via telehealth.
What does this mean for you?
These new measures will allow injured workers to access essential health services from their own homes, if they are reducing the risk of exposure and spread of COVID-19 by self-isolating.
Telehealth services are recommended to only be utilised in clinically appropriate circumstances and should not replace the ordinary mode of fact to fact consultations.
Is this service appropriate for you?
Telehealth services will not be suitable in every circumstance. Therefore, you should consider the following before deciding if it is suitable for you:
- Are you able access and navigate technology?
- Is your location an effective and safe environment?
- Does your health professional have a plan that can be implemented in addressing and mitigating any potential risk associated to your injury?
If you think that telehealth is the appropriate service method for you, you should provide consent to using this service to your Lawyer, or the relevant Agent.
Who is considered an essential health service provider?
These temporary measures apply to the following health service providers:
- Medical Practitioners;
- Occupational Therapists;
- Exercise Physiologists;
- Psychologists; and
- Accredited Mental Health Workers.
Health professionals providing telehealth services as part of the Victorian Workers’ Compensation Scheme are expected to integrate the Clinical Framework for the Delivery of Health Services into their practice.
Health professionals must also ensure that the deliverance of telehealth services achieve the best clinical, functional and vocational outcomes for injured workers, in collaboration with other medical and support services involved in the management and treatment of the injured worker.
What if my treatment service has already been approved?
Telehealth services can be utilised in circumstances where treatment services have already been approved by the relevant Agent.
If you are requesting a new treatment service, the Agent must review decisions in accordance with current operating procedures and decide if telehealth is an appropriate alternative for you.
Trust our family to care for you
Our team at Zaparas Lawyers understand that this current climate can be a very stressful time for all, particularly injured workers.
If you are having difficulties with accessing telehealth services, our dedicated team members are here help you, and are available to take your call.
*This piece was written by Alexandra Serban, Lawyer in the Zaparas Lawyers WorkCover team.