An insight into work and health in Australia and across the globe
As the largest provider of independent medical opinion in Australia, we are in the privileged position of being able to tap our resources, expertise and data to educate our customers and forecast trends.
Below are just a selection of articles prepared by our team or consultants, and many more are available via vault.
Telehealth Independent Medical Examinations
In today’s world, acceptance is rapidly increasing that people will benefit more and more from telehealth (virtual) medical consultations. IMEs done via telehealth can provide greater access to the best independent clinicians around the country and overseas to facilitate care and claims management guidance and support timely and better outcomes.
Conducting best practice forensic independent medical assessments this way requires specific skills and considered approaches to ensure the assessment closely mirrors the in-person assessment and provides results that stand up to scrutiny. It is not just about technology. It is a solution for new routines and work flows, which continue to put the person being assessed at the centre of care.
This white paper represents MedHealth’s approach to telehealth IME assessments and represents a broad range of the type of solutions that we can offer under our telehealth model.
Managing work-related stress
Work-related stress is on the rise in Australia, affecting the wellbeing of employees and costing employers billions in lost productivity. Insurers are also paying out more in claims than ever. But this type of stress can be dramatically reduced if properly understood and managed.
Research shows that dealing with the common causes of stress, such as too much work, and a lack of support from managers, is more likely to lead to long-term solutions. Simply helping individuals affected by stress won’t promote lasting change.
Organisations can introduce measures to prevent work-related stress in the first place, such as ensuring people have the right skills and training to do their jobs well. They can also bring in effective ways to manage and treat people who are already affected by stress.
Insights into individual and workplace resilience
Resilience in individuals and organisations is seen as more necessary than ever in our changing world, and central to business success. Being able to adapt and recover quickly from difficulties is a crucial skill in times of uncertainty in the world.
Over the past decade workplaces have begun to introduce resilience training to strengthen individual and organisational capacity to deal with challenges, such as work-related stress and illness and changing marketplaces. This investment is now viewed as imperative, both for employers to retain their top people and for employees to keep their jobs.
The opioid epidemic
Opioids such as oxycodone and fentanyl, and opiates, such as morphine and codeine, have been overprescribed in the past 25 years, leading to what many describe as an opioid crisis around the world, including in Australia. Instead of being prescribed only for severe, cancer-causing pain, as had occurred in the past, doctors, on the advice of pharmaceutical companies, started to dramatically increase their prescribing of these drugs for non-cancer pain.
This scenario, which has led to huge profits for pharmaceutical companies, has also led to opioid epidemics. Such large-scale use of these addiction-causing drugs has caused the deaths of millions of people around the world, with estimates that more Americans die each week from opioid overdose than from motor vehicle accidents. Experts in Australia say that to reduce the toll of the epidemic here, prescribers must only use opioids in the most severe of cases and do all they can to stop the situation from getting worse.