Since launching its Return-to-Work Assistance Program (RTWAP) on 28 February 2023 in Region IV-A, the Employees’ Compensation Commission (ECC) has facilitated eight persons with work-related disabilities (PWRDs) successful return to work at their previous companies.

The RTWAP is an interdisciplinary approach to rehabilitation support that aims to facilitate PWRDs recovery and safe and timely return to employment. “Our goal in the RTWAP is to minimize the negative effect of injuries on our PWRDs by providing them a chance to remain productive and still earn a full income,” said ECC Executive Director Kaima Via B. Velasquez.

Under the RTWAP, ECC provides assistance to both workers and employers throughout its seven-step process – from treatment and rehabilitation, availment of EC benefits, pre-return assessment, development of the return-to-work plan, implementation, monitoring, up to its evaluation.

As part of the RTWAP process, the PWRDs are currently undergoing free consultations and physical therapy sessions. ECC Work Contingency Prevention and Rehabilitation Division Chief Dr. Christine Marquez and Regional Administrative Officer Jeruz Castillo, Certified Disability Management Professionals, spearheaded the consultation meetings with the companies of the PWRDs to discuss their return-to-work plan.

All eight PWRDs also received EC sickness benefits and EC cash assistance worth P10,000 pesos.

ECC plans to roll out the RTWAP nationwide in the future. In the meantime, it calls on companies in Region IV-A to enroll their workers with work-related contingencies under the program as early as possible to ensure early intervention for an increased chance of a successful return to employment. But above all, it implores all companies to provide healthful and safe working conditions to their employees.