The coronavirus COVID-19 pandemic has seen many of us facing major changes in both our home and working lives. This rapid change can create uncertainty and new challenges which can bring about feelings of anxiety, distress and concern.
Looking after our mental health and that of our colleagues is important as the situation continues to evolve.
Here are some resources that can help our mental health and wellbeing.
Mental health resources
Assure programs – EAP resources:
- What is EAP?(video)
- COVID-19 support services
- Understanding health anxiety
- Understanding working from home
- Reduce your risk working from home - tips
- Major event resources - information sheets on topics including managing your health, building trust in teams, managing remote teams, manager support, supporting children and more
Other mental health resources:
- Head to Health COVID-19 support resources
- Beyond Blue coronavirus mental wellbeing support service
- Black Dog coronavirus: resources for anxiety & stress
- WHS Library
- This Way Up: eLearning to support you through the COVID-19 pandemic including guided workbooks, self-assessments and frequently asked questions on mental health.
Working from home
Information on working from home arrangements during COVID-19 can be found on the main COVID-19 information page.
Ergonomic assessments while working from home
Consistent with your obligations to proactively take care of your own health and safety while at work, all employees working remotely must take active steps to set up a safe working environment. You are strongly encouraged to view a recorded webinar which provides an understanding of key home office ergonomic principles and a range of health, safety and wellbeing considerations to reduce the risk of injury when working in a home office environment. You can watch the recording on MOP(S) Learning.
You are also encouraged to complete the online ergonomic self-assessment tool on Skytrust at www.skytrust.co. Where further assessment is required, it is possible to have a guided assessment over the phone via Facetime with our WHS provider.
To access the self-assessment tool go to the induction tile on the left hand column of the Skytrust homepage. On the next screen click on ‘start online Induction training’ and this will take you to the next screen where you will see the ‘Workstation setup and ergonomic assessment tool’.
Pre-existing ergonomic equipment
If you have already been provided with ergonomic equipment from a prior assessment and require the equipment to enable you to work remotely, you should speak with your employer about safely transporting the equipment to your home for the duration of your working from home arrangement. All equipment must be returned to your work place once the arrangement has ceased.
If you have any questions about a current compensable condition or are receiving support through the Department for a non-compensable condition, contact your case manager via MOPSsupport@finance.gov.au.
Where an employee has approval to work from home you will be covered under the Safety Rehabilitation and Compensation Act (SRC Act). More information can be found on the Comcare website
Injury while working at home
If you are injured while working at home, seek medical attention if required, immediately notify your supervisor and submit an incident report through Skytrust at www.skytrust.co. You could also call the WHS provider on 1300 418 288 or email firstname.lastname@example.org to notify the incident.
Early intervention may be available for injuries sustained while working from home. Please contact MOPSsupport@finance.gov.au to discuss with our HR Advice and Support team.
Employee Assistance Program (EAP)
If you are concerned or feel anxious about coronavirus, you or your family can talk with professional psychologists as part of the Employee Assistance Program.
Practical tips for infection control in your office
- Put posters up about hand and respiratory hygiene
- Make tissues and hand sanitiser readily available. Stock disposable cleaning gloves and disinfectant wipes.
- Regularly wipe down contact points such as pens, phones, door knobs chair arms etc. (between cleaning visits).
- Wipe down any shared work surfaces between people accessing the same space.
- Ensure bins with lids are available in common areas (for used tissues).
- Maintain Social distancing requirements.
- Maintain a visitor/contact register for your office.
- Avoid touching your mouth, nose, eyes unless your hands are clean.
- Wash hands regularly with soap and water and dry them.
- Cover your cough with a tissue and throw in the bin after use (wash hands after coughing).
- Cough into your elbow if you don’t have a tissue.