Year in review

AEC overview

Report on performance: Outcome 1

Report on performance: Outcome 2

Report on performance: Outcome 3

Management and accountability

Financial performance and future operations



Appendix C - Occupational health and safety (AEC Annual Report 2008-09)

Updated: 6 December 2010

The AEC is committed to promoting, maintaining and ensuring the health, safety and welfare at work of its employees. The AEC provides an annual report on its occupational health and safety (OHS) performance in accordance with s. 74 of the Occupational Health and Safety Act 1991 (OHS Act).


In 2008–09, the AEC developed and implemented the following policies:

  • Managing Attendance Policy
  • Workplace Bullying Policy and Guidelines
  • Working in Remote Localities Policy and Guidelines.

The OHS and Injury Management Plan 2008–10 was also implemented to guide and monitor the AEC's OHS performance.

Health and safety activities

The OHS and Injury Management Plan 2008–10 sets out the AEC's OHS objectives and responsibilities. The plan allows the AEC to track its performance in OHS and injury prevention and management across the organisation.

The AEC remains focused on timely and effective injury management, including early intervention strategies to return AEC employees to work, in accordance with Comcare legislation and AEC policies and guidelines. The AEC also continues to implement health promotion strategies to improve the health and wellbeing of staff.

In 2008–09, to ensure the health, safety and welfare of employees:

  • The National OHS Committee met three times, to provide reports and recommendations to consultative forums and strategic committees on health and safety matters of national relevance.
  • State OHS committees met regularly to discuss and manage local health and safety issues. Minutes of the OHS committees were made available to all employees through the AEC intranet.
  • AEC employees in the Organisational Health area attended Comcare client network meetings and conferences to keep up to date with developments in OHS and rehabilitation case management.
  • Under its preventive health strategy, the AEC provided a national influenza vaccination program for staff in April and May 2009.
  • The AEC provided current advice to staff on the H1N1 Influenza virus and took appropriate measures to minimise the risk of the virus spreading.
  • The AEC provided an Employee Assistance Program for all staff.
  • The AEC engaged a service provider to deliver ergonomic workstation assessment services. The service provider is available to conduct specified assessments at any AEC location in Australia, for new employees or those who are experiencing injury or discomfort.
  • The AEC participated in Safe Work Week 2008, promoted by the Australian Safety and Compensation Council, and arranged for a hazard inspection to be undertaken in all AEC offices.

Health and safety outcomes

As a result of the AEC's ongoing commitment and 2008–09 initiatives:

  • Incident reports were managed in a timely manner, allowing early intervention support for staff with injuries.
  • Early intervention resulted in reduced time off work for new claims during 2008–09 and contributed to a significant reduction in the AEC's estimated Comcare premium for 2009–10.

Comcare premiums

Table 40 Comcare premiums, 2006–07 to 2009–10
Annual premium ($) 714 102 1 009 573 1 001 648 360 260

The AEC's actual and estimated Comcare premiums for four financial years are included in Table 40.

The Comcare premium for 2009–10 is estimated to be $360 260. This represents a decrease in the premium rate from 1.49 per cent of payroll in 2008–09 to 0.95 percent of payroll in 2009–10.

Claims management

The Human Resources Strategy and Development Section manages compensation and non-compensable claims. An external provider performs rehabilitation and case management services for approximately 15-20 hours per week.

Compensation claims

In 2008–09, the AEC managed 55 compensation claims, of which nine were new claims. This is a significant reduction in the number of claims managed in 2007–08, as shown in Table 41. Mental stress and body stressing claims resulted in the highest levels of lost time.

Table 41 New Comcare claims, 2005–06 to 2008–09
  2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09
New claims 14 27 28 9

Non-compensable cases

In 2008–09, the AEC managed 30 non-compensable cases, including fitness for continued duty assessments, invalidity retirement, and rehabilitation and counselling support. This number was significantly higher than in 2007–08, when 12 non-compensable cases were managed by the AEC.

Incident statistics

As shown in Table 42, the number of incident reports in 2008–09 was considerably lower than in 2007–08.

Table 42 Accident and incident reports, 2005–06 to 2008–09
  2005–06 2006–07 2007–08 2008–09
Accidents/incidents reported 41 86 140 45
Dangerous occurrences 36 85 126 39

Investigations, directions and notices

There were no investigations under s. 41 of the OHS Act.

No notices or directions were issued pursuant to sections 29, 46 or 47 of the OHS Act.