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Mental Health Week 2018
One of the leading causes of disability in Canada, mental illness affects one in five Canadians every year with about eight per cent of adults experiencing a major depression. Mental illness is serious and it is largely misunderstood considering its ability to impact the social and professional lives of those it affects.
Mental Health Week brings awareness
Mental Health Week seeks to bring awareness to this “invisible illness”, to reduce the stigma around it and to encourage conversations about mental illness and mental health. Sadly, stigma and shame keep those suffering with mental illness from seeking the treatment they desperately need. Lack of awareness and understanding isolates people from the support of their family, friends and co-workers. This is especially true for those who are filing disability claims.
Mental Health Week and disability claims
Mental health awareness is imperative in filing a disability claim. A successful claim requires proof of treatment. It requires a clear understanding of the illness and the limitations of the claimant. To make a claim, the insurance company will need to know how the illness affects the claimant’s ability to perform their job as well as information and observations from a doctor. These are all much easier to obtain when the stigma is removed and there is awareness, understanding and open dialogue about mental illness.
The CMHA provides the following statistics to create greater awareness of the disease.
* By age 40, about 50 per cent of the population will have or have had a mental illness.
* Anxiety disorders affect 5 per cent of households, causing mild to severe impairment.
* Approximately 1 per cent of Canadians will experience bipolar disorder.
* 1 per cent of the Canadian population is affected by schizophrenia.
* 49 per cent of those who feel that they suffer from depression or anxiety have never been to see a doctor about it.
* Stigma/discrimination presents a serious barrier to diagnosis and treatment and acceptance in the community.
The Canadian Mental Health Association, founded in 1918, is one of the oldest voluntary organizations in Canada. Each year, they provide services and supports to more than 1.3 million Canadians through the combined efforts of more than 11,000 volunteers and staff across Canada in over 330 communities.
If you or someone you know needs assistance in filing a disability claim, please contact us for a free consultation. We understand, we care and we are here to help.
Farming Accident Insurance Claims
Unfortunately a farming accident can happen any time. The spring weather is finally here and across the outer regions of Ottawa and into Kemptville, Cornwall, Arnprior and the Valley, farmers are beginning to prepare for their spring planting season.
Living in the city, we often forget that these farms are where our food comes from and that these farmers work long hours in, sometimes, dangerous situations.
Machinery is the major cause of accidents and injuries in farm workers with 70 per cent of fatalities being attributed to machine rollovers, run overs, entanglement in moving machinery parts or other machinery-related causes, (Canada Safety Council). Proper training, education and preventative maintenance are very important to maintain a safe working environment.
Farming accident and safety
The best tool for any farmer who operates machinery is the owner’s manual. Machines are designed with safety in mind and are often used without error with properly maintained and operated.
An inspection of the machinery at the start of the work day can sometimes expose serious safety issues. Leaking air or hydraulic lines, missing machine guards or obstructed stop switches can have dire consequences. Safe operation should include a daily walk around the machinery. Here are some safety tips for farm operators.
* Wear personal protective equipmenton the job. Goggles, safety shoes and leather gloves are all potentially lifesaving.
* Avoid wearing any loose-fitting clothing, jewelry, hairstyles or anything that could get caught on moving parts.
* Stay away from moving parts at all times. If there’s something caught in a moving part, make sure to turn off the machine and remove the keys from the ignition before performing maintenance.
* When parking a machine on a slope, make sure to block it. The majority of all run over accidents between 2002-2012 were caused by unmanned machines.
* Exercise caution and judgment when operating a machine close to the edge of a ditch, slope or field. This is the most frequent cause of machine rollovers.
* Perform preventative maintenance regularly, making sure that machinery is properly lubricated, adjusted and does not have parts that are in need of adjustment or repair.
Farming can be a dangerous industry, but education and a mind for safety can greatly reduce accidents and injuries.
If you or someone you love has been injured in a farming accident, call us today. We understand, we care and we are here to help.
Extension of presumption for entitlement for cancers in firefighters.
What do WSIB claims and cancer have in common ? Ontario has made it easier for firefighters to get the help and care they need by extending the presumption for entitlement to benefits to cervical, ovarian and penile cancers.
“Firefighters are vital to keeping our communities safe from life-threatening dangers. Every day, they risk their health and their lives to protect us and our communities. In return, we must protect them. That’s why the government has made it easier for firefighters and fire investigators to qualify for workplace safety and insurance benefits,” Kevin Flynn, Minister of Labour.
By adding the three cancers to the list of cancers presumed to be related to their work, firefighters and fire investigators will have greater access to healthcare and compensation. With the expanded presumption, once a firefighter is diagnosed with cervical, ovarian or penile cancer, the claims process for WSIB claims benefits will be expedited, and firefighters will not be required to prove a causal link between these cancers and a workplace exposure.
“If a firefighter is diagnosed with cervical, ovarian or penile cancer, the worker’s Workplace Safety and Insurance Board ( WSIB) claims for benefits and services will be presumed to be work-related. This will give firefighters faster access to compensation and other benefits, ultimately supporting positive recovery outcomes,” Ron Kelusky, Chief Prevention Officer
Claims related to cervical, ovarian and penile cancers will be retroactive to January 1, 1960. This will apply to full-time, part-time and volunteer firefighters, firefighters employed by band councils and fire investigators.
* In 2007, the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act (WSIA) was amended to create a statutory presumption for firefighters and fire investigators to get compensation for heart injuries and certain cancers without having to prove they are work-related.
* In 2014, the Ontario government amended the Firefighter Regulation under the Workplace Safety and Insurance Act to add six cancers to the list of diseases that are work-related: multiple myeloma, testicular, breast, prostate, lung and skin cancer.
* This amended regulation makes Ontario among the leaders in this area and Ontario’s firefighters among the best protected in Canada.
* There are about 450 fire departments in Ontario made up of about 11,000 full-time firefighters, 19,000 volunteer firefighters and 200 part-time firefighters
If you, or someone you love, has been injured at work or has a work-related diagnosis of disease, give us a call. We can help you make sure that you receive the benefits that you deserve.
Accidents in Ontario on the rise
In a recent article written for the Advocate Daily, we commented on a report indicating a five-year high for fatalities for accidents in Ontario on OPP patrolled roads and waterways. We said that we were not surprised there were more accidents in Ontario given the growing number of vehicles on the road each year. That, combined with the increased use of electronics and hand-held devices in vehicles has created deadly distractions for drivers today.
Accidents in Ontario statistics
The report, produced by the OPP, highlighted some startling statistics from our roadways.
· 343 people died in collisions in 2017 compared to 307 in 2016, with the increase coming from driver inattention, speed and not wearing seatbelts
· 91 people died in collisions that involved a commercial transport truck in 2017
· 48 motorcyclists died in 2017
Driver Error is a Key Factor in Accidents in Ontario
A further look into the causes of these accidents show that driver error is a key factor. In addition to being distracted, drivers are failing to come to a complete stop and intersections, misjudging the speed of oncoming traffic when stopping or merging and they are driving recklessly.
Sometimes things are beyond the driver’s control such as road disrepair and weather conditions. And sometimes the condition of the vehicle can contribute to the accident. Faulty brakes, broken signal lights windows or mirrors all increase the likelihood of an accident. It is always the responsibility of the driver to ensure that the vehicle is in good repair, that it is serviced regularly and that does not have an outstanding recall.
To prevent another increase in our provincial accident statistics, there are a few things that you can do to keep our roadways safe.
Adopt a Three Second Rule
Experts suggest that you leave a three second gap between your vehicle and the one in front of you. To do this, pick a stationary landmark such as a tree or sign. When the car ahead of you is about to pass that landmark, start counting. If the car passes the landmark before you reach three, you need to slow down. You are following too closely. Reducing your speed will allow you enough space to slow down or stop quickly to avoid a hazard.
Use Your Full Attention When Driving
Operating a vehicle, of any kind, requires your full attention. If you need to read a map, eat, check on kids in the back or make a call, pull over when it’s safe.
Driving impaired or stoned can severely diminish your reaction time and your ability to notice hazards on the road. The same is true for driving tired. Avoid drugs and alcohol when driving and get enough rest.
In light of these recent reports, please drive carefully to protect you and your family. If you have been involved in a car accident in Ontario, you likely qualify for accident benefits to help you as you recover. If you have been involved in a car accident and have question about how to deal with insurance claims and benefits, please contact for a free consultation.