This data management bulletin assists insurers with the
reporting of the Injury Narrative and understanding the intent of
the data usage.
The requirement to report the injury narrative is specified
within the Workers' compensation insurers' interface data
specifications for the monthly insurer interface as per
4.2.6 - Injury Narrative.
From 1 July 2003, the Workers' Compensation Regulator
removed the requirement for insurers to supply injury mechanism and
agency due to the complexity of coding. Instead, we agreed to
work with insurers to improve the reporting of narratives.
These narratives are used by the Office of Economic and
Statistical Research (OESR) to code the mechanism and agency of an
injury for Safe Work Australia's National Data Set.
Business practice and guidance notes
The injury narrative must describe the action and the cause of
the injury. Sufficient detail must be provided so as to enable the
OESR to appropriately code the injury mechanism and injury
The injury narrative may not be limited to that described by the
injured worker. Where insufficient detail is provided by the
injured worker, the insurer is responsible for obtaining and
including adequate details to,
(1) Comply with the injury narrative business rule
and validation as per 4.2.6 of the Workers' compensation
insurers' interface data specifications version 6.0, and
(2) Provide sufficient information to enable the
allocation of appropriate agency and mechanism codes by the
To assist insurers with describing the injury narrative and, in
particular, describing the agency and mechanism, the following
questions should be considered,
- What was the worker doing at the time of the disease exposure
or just before the injury occurrence?
E.g. driving a fork lift, lifting bags of cement, walking to
- What action or exposure best describes the event resulting in
the injury or disease?
This description should commence with an 'action concept', for
example, that of "being hit by", "exposure to", "slipped", "contact
with", or "caught between".
- What agency was involved in the occurrence?
The agency of injury/disease refers to the object, substance or
circumstance directly involved in the cause of the injury or
disease, for example, chlorine, floor or ride on mowers, that, when
combined with an action concept, describes what caused the worker's
injury/disease. For example, exposure to chemicals, being hit
by a hammer, slipped on wet floor, scaffolding collapsed, muscular
stress while lifting cartons.
For further information on the National Data Set reporting
requirements, please visit Safe Work Australia - Workers Compensation
Telephone the Data Management Team on (07) 3020 6447or email firstname.lastname@example.org.