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Returning to Work

One important aspect of emotional recovery is resuming activities that you previously enjoyed such as working and physical interests. 

Most people are able to resume many of the physical interests they had prior to the amputation, including sport and work.

While some manual jobs may no longer be possible following an amputation, many manual tasks are still possible or can be adapted to enable an amputee to perform them.  Non­manual work is usually not affected by an amputation.  When you are able to return to work you may be eligible for Federal Government assistance to modify your workplace or work vehicle, contact the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) for more information.

Many amputees return to work but it may not be in the same position.  Returning to work in the same capacity as before is dependent on the type of work and how supportive your employer is in adapting to your needs.  Amputees report that returning to work is a valuable way to feel productive and to socialise.  However many experienced issues such as being passed over for promotion.  Supervisors may monitor your time off and performance more than other employees or refuse adaptations to your working arrangements.  If you find yourself treated unfairly at work after your amputation contact the Fair Work Ombudsman, Australian Human Rights Commission or your union for advice.

Some amputees decide to retrain and change career. Discuss your options with Centrelink regarding training, job placement options and vocational rehabilitation.  If you decide to study, financial assistance may be available for assistive technology and course modification.  Contact the Queensland Tertiary Studies Authority for more information on tertiary course entry and financial assistance.

If you do not return to paid employment there are many volunteer opportunities that you could consider.  Charitable organisations require all manner of skills so there is a suitable volunteering opportunity for most people. Volunteering can be a way to try something you have always wanted to do and you may find it leads to a career change.