Workcover drives injured workers in spiraling depression – story


The following story, shared by “L”describes the all too familiar feeling that, once on the workcover system, many of us become a prisoner of our own body and are being driven to what “L” can only describe as a “spiraling emotional unhealthiness and depression….”

Workcover drives injured workers in spiraling depression


hi all,


Not even sure if anyone will read this but need to get it out there.

I suffered an injury to my [upper limb] last year and have undergone two surgeries since. The first one was a failure ( IMO) and sought a second opinion as I was still in pain and had very limited movement ( Maybe 20%) at best. It is now 3 months after my second surgery and still have very limited results ( extra 10% on a good day if the wind is
blowing right, I have to use humour to get me through this).

I have been going to physio twice a week for the past year and [x] months excluding a bit of down time just after operations.

I feel like I am in my own private hell.

I had to move back from interstate as my work place had no suitable duties for me although I knew there was but even when and if I was to get better they had let it slip they had no job for me.

My dreams and aspirations have been put on hold and everything I have worked so hard for is gone.

I’m lucky that I have a very understanding [spouse] though at times I think s/he would be better of without me at this stage.

I have always been so very active but this injury has stripped me of all things “fun”.

I’m now being pushed by these work place rehab people to engage me in some kind of employment. Now I’m happy with that but what they don’t seem to understand is the restrictions I have. Apparently the world is full
of rainbows and skittles and I’m going to be fine. I work in or used to work in [the filed of labour such as construction / mining industry] and not once have I been for a job that hasn’t required a medical. I’m lucky enough to know quite a lot
of people that are health and safety advisors, and have asked them for some guidance in what I would be suitable for. All have the same answer, find a new career. I’m a liability and no one in there right mind would hire me.

I have tried to engage further training through my insurance to assist in profitable employment but with no help from them. I’m at a loss.

In speaking with my surgeon he has given me the prognosis of long term/ permanent disability although I’m not happy with that, the reality of it has hit hard.

I have become a prisoner of my own body and am being driven to what I can only describe as a spiraling emotional unhealthiness and depression.

I don’t really have any complaints towards my work cover insurance (state 1) as they have been helpful in some ways, my biggest gripe is that I’m currently living back in [Qld] and boy do they suck down here.

In the past 3 months I have had the workplace rehab call me almost twice a week every week without fail pushing and crapping on about how good they are and how the above mention rainbows and skittles are your future. They push you to a point of disparity.

I will not give up the fight but I’m struggling to keep the fight in me at times.

I sympathise with all the others out there as I know I’m a bit better off then some.

5 Responses to “Workcover drives injured workers in spiraling depression – story”

  1. You are most definitely not alone…..
    Your story sounds very familiar to me as i have been through much of the same situations and then some, including the type of injury, the work-over system after surgery and the complications from surgery including the implications on your life and family. Although now my claim has been closed and my surgeon (after enough pressure from the insurer) has deem my injury as stable and stationary and after months of putting myself through pain to do my job (obviously as i needed an income) after the claim was closed, i was terminated… Due to being deemed unfit to perform my employment requirements, by an IME.
    Be very wary of IME’s and the lies they will tell on behalf of whoever is paying for the assessment, that is all i can say.

    Sounds like you still have a fair ways to go as i am nearly three years in with two injuries/ aggravations. There is a lot that you will not be told with both your rights as an injured worker and the avenues you have available to you. If i can help in any way or offer any advise i would be more than happy to in a more private forum or means of communication.

  2. Just you hold on & hang in there L! I don’t know if you are male or female. But why their side becomes so strong is the tendency to isolate us in our homes and make our lives (with our familes going on with their daily business outside the home, while relying upon us to recover our prior level of functioning of course) those of quiet desperation. If male, have you heard of the National Association of Men’s Sheds? I’d strongly recommend it to any man being subjected to the debilitating “Workover” process. Get involved with your local shed -you’ll be surprised how many other men you’ll find there in your exact situation! You’ll be surprised how good it is to find new purpose and self-worth through projects you get to design and implement at your own pace. You’re not told what to do by others; you get to choose. If you just want to talk about cars, or fishing, or anything, you can do that to. Just remember, it isn’t you, it’s THEM, the Workcover System and there is life and purpose at the end of the tunnel! If you’re a woman, the local neighbourhood house may help. There’ll be a lot of other women there finding their way back to themselves and their dignity, too! Don’t wait at home where you’re a target for the “rainbow & skittles” people to get to you. If they can’t phone you, they’ll have to write to you and then you’ll be able to choose when you’ll open their mail (with their identifying company logos decorating the envelopes). Anyway, hope this helps. What I’m saying L, is that I think you need to get out of your own head space for a while; we’re social animals; so go socialize with some real human beings that can empathize with your situation. I’m not trivializing what you’re going through, I’m trying to suggest a way to strengthen you to go through it because I’m a fellow traveller. Hope this helps!

  3. You are most definitely not alone, you are one of thousands of workers who have been injured. Once the claim is accepted by the insurance company it is them who will do ANYTING

    • A poop, to “get rid” of you and close the claim. It is an evil game they play with everyone (unless you are a fat politician who falls off an exercise bike).
      They are wanting you to throw in the towel and give up. The Government wants to get rid of the Unions, then of course change Workcover protection for workers. bingo, you have no one to turn to. The real terrorist threat in Australia is a big building in Canberra full of callous political sharks looking after gina and her friends.

  4. I get no contact from CM, CGU, unless I have requested treatment, which they now deny unless its physio for my accepted impairment injury… I also have aggravated injuries and have to fight for anything there, even though there was no ongoing problem prior to my workplace accident… So sick of the whole ACCS procedure, would much rather be back at work and be able to do my own housework, cooking, gardening etc…
    I actually feel quite isolated, apart from my kids, a few friends and my Dr, I don’t have regular contact with the outside world anymore… Even shopping is becoming a real hassle.