A coronial inquest into the death of a worker addicted to the opioid oxycodone, prescribed for an ankle injury, has heard the treatment of chronic pain should focus on patients' mental health rather than "numbing" their symptoms.
Canadian work health experts have joined the growing list of researchers warning that prescribing opioids for work-related injuries can lead to serious harm and protracted claims, and should be avoided.
A major report, prompted by a public health emergency declared by US President Donald Trump, has found a high proportion of injured workers are prescribed opioids, often unnecessarily, exposing them to the risk of addiction within days of use and driving up employers' workers' comp costs.
In an important and much anticipated case, an appeals court has found a worker can't "combine" his impairments from a back injury and from being over-prescribed opioid medication to increase his lump sum payment.
A worker who offered a co-worker medication that he purportedly obtained "off the dark web", to help the co-worker stay awake, was rightly dismissed for supplying prescription drugs in the workplace, a commission has found.
A supervisor has become the second entity to be convicted and fined over a FIFO worker's drowning, after he pleaded guilty to failing to follow his employer's safety manual or provide safe access to the workplace.
Employers are increasingly scrutinising workers' out-of-hours conduct, but must ensure any resulting disciplinary measures aren't excessive, a commissioner has stressed in ordering the reinstatement of a worker who got drunk and vomited at a client's function.