Register your interest


Register your interest


Safety in Action Presents: The Return to Work Conference

Supporting our workers towards safe, productive and sustainable return to work

5-6 September 2017 | Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre

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The Return to Work Conference is a two-day, high profile conference for rehabilitation, HR and Workplace Health & Safety leaders. All employers are required under workplace health and safety laws to have in place policies and plans for the return to work of injured workers. This year’s program will look into best practice strategies that supports employees through the process of rehabilitation and manages their return to the workplace in a timely and safe manner.

Running concurrently with the The Safety in Action Conference and Workplace Wellness Conference, and in adjacent rooms, you will be able to switch sessions and plan a track to suit your requirements.

To receive updates on the conference, register your interest and we will notify you of updates as they happen.

Co-located with the two conferences is the Safety in Action Tradeshow, Australia’s leading occupational health and safety event. The Safety in Action Show is trade only event and is free to attend. Find out more here.


8:55 am

OPENING | Opening remarks from the Chair


9:00 am

  • Highlighting how the current system is functioning; benefits and challenges
  • A focus on mental health & medically complex claims


9:40 am

  • An insight into success practices – what we did to turn our situation around?
  • Accommodating duties at all costs or it will cost you – factoring in changes to premium impactors and terminating claimants
  • Reducing risk by managing personal injuries and when to stop fighting a claim
  • Innovative techniques: early monitoring, proposed RTW plans, write your own IME history etc.

10:20 am

Networking and refreshment break


10:50 am

Research tells us that resilience can be learned and that resilient individuals have fewer mental health concerns and better overall physical health. Being on workers’ compensation challenges a person’s strength, identity and tests their resilience.

This presentation will examine how we can support all workers’ mental health during the return to work process and prevent secondary psychological issues using a proactive approach.


11:30 am

  • An insight into South Australia’s journey to mobile case management
  • Outlining the benefits and success of this innovative method
  • Learning along the way: lessons from Rehab, HR, Workplace Health & Safety Leaders

12:10 pm

Lunch and Safety in Action Exhibition Viewing


2:10 pm

  • Highlighting challenges specific to high risk environments
  • How can RTW coordinators improve results
  • Enforcing prevention of secondary and repeat injuries


2:50 pm

  • Specific challenges for managers – what to say/not say and what to do for employees returning to work after a mental illness
  • Barriers for employees in returning to work
  • Challenging stigma in the process

3:30 pm

Networking and refreshment break


3:50 pm

  • Utilising the latest strategies to increase RTW success rates
  • Developing a collective approach from all involved parties
  • Ensuring effective case management


4:30 pm

  • Highlighting how RMIT’s changed approach has led to outstanding outcomes
  • Where has change been most beneficial?
  • Offering an insight into how different industries can adapt their approach

5:10 pm

  • Changing techniques for managing RTW programmes

5:50 pm

CLOSING | Closing remarks from the Chair

6:00 pm

Networking drinks

8:55 am

OPENING | Opening remarks from the Chair


9:00 am

  • What changes are in the pipeline
  • How are current policy effecting results?
  • Where can improvements be made?


9:40 am

  • Following the successful return to work of Michael Stoddart after his involvement in a car accident
  • Exploring the key roles of all involved in the process

10:20 am

Networking and refreshment break


10:40 am

  • Covering returning to work post injury/illness
  • Where does the responsibility lie?
  • Promoting good health and prevention in the workplace

11:20 am

  • Outlining current regulations
  • Key issues managing workplace injuries
  • Where does the responsibility lie?

12:00 pm

Lunch and networking break


2:00 pm

  • Physiotherapy and different stages of soft tissue recovery – What are the stages of recovery from a soft tissue injury and how does physiotherapy change through these stages? David will share the 3 stages of how soft tissue or sprain or strain injury may present and key questions employers and insurers can ask the treating physiotherapist to get the best for their injured workers.


2:40 pm

  • Noting the importance of secondary and independent opinions
  • Correctly diagnosing long-term reoccurring issues
  • Challenging long held beliefs and treatments for injuries

3:20 pm

Networking and refreshment break


3:50 pm

  • Understanding the risks and which industries are at the most risk of alcohol and drugs related injuries
  • Realising the impact on RTW plans – how can pharmaceuticals disrupt and delay the process
  • Creating structures and procedures to avoid reoccurring problems

4:30 pm

  • Ensuring that workers are capable of reperforming duties before returning to the workplace
  • Managing risk during the RTW process
  • Placing an emphasis on prevention

5:10 pm

CLOSING | Closing remarks from the Chair

5:20 pm

End of Conference


Packages Price
Package(Two Days)$1495+GSTEarly Bird

Event Pricing

  • Standard registration pricing: $1,495 + GST


The Safety in Action Conference is held concurrently with the Safety in Action Tradeshow. The Safety in Action Show is Australia’s leading Occupational Health and Safety event dedicated to the safety, security and wellbeing of the Australian workforce. For the last eighteen years the Safety in Action series of exhibitions have been the meeting place for the Australian health & safety industry. Thousands of OH&S professionals across the industry have visited Safety in Action to discover new solutions to help them achieve their goals in creating safer workplaces.

Engage in three dedicated safety zones, network with over 120 exhibitors, learn from industry experts during free safety seminars and workshops, source the latest innovative products and services and get involved in the interactive opportunities the Show has to offer. A must-attend for every OH&S professional.

Safety in Action is trade only event and is free to attend. For more information, visit the Safety in Action Show website.

Supporting Partner


Elizabeth Uehling

General Manager - Return to Work and Support, iCare

Michele Ghassemi

Regional Workplace Safety & Wellbeing leader, David Jones

Larissa Meysner

Manager Psychological Services (WA), PeopleSense by Altius


Shaun Meehan

General Manager, Gallagher Bassett

Jason Vella

Psychological Services Manager, Injury Treatment

Sally Kirkright

CEO, Access EAP

Amanda Johnston

State Manager - Victoria & ACT, Interact Group

Senior Representative, RMIT University

Michael Stoddart

Head of Injury Management, Lend Lease & Principal Consultant, Aumento

Elizabeth Bennett

Workplace Support Coordinator, Canberra Institute of Technology


David Brentnall

Specialist Physiotherapist, Axis Rehab

Natasha Jager

National Manager Workplace Services, ADF

when & where

05 - 06 Sep 2017

Melbourne Convention and Exhibition Centre
1 Convention Centre Place, South Wharf VIC 3003
03 9235 8000

Book Accommodation with Lido Group
For your convenience Lido Group will manage your accommodation needs. Click here or call 02 8585 0808.


Still have a question?

Jamie Birch
Conference Producer
02 9080 4300

Andrew Sinkovich
Sponsorship Manager
02 9080 4008

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