PUBLICATION this week of a Monash University study into medical and mental health issues for truck drivers has prompted a call for action from the Transport Workers Union.

The study shows truck drivers after a work injury are more likely to undergo surgery and have more doctor visits compared with other workers.

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The study also showed most of the health care drivers access is provided more than three months after the injury and that for mental health services 92% of drivers seeking treatment were waiting more than 14 weeks.

“This study points to some serious issues in our industry when drivers’ health is failing,” said TWU national secretary Michael Kaine.

“It is also showing major issues when drivers are delaying accessing treatment, especially for mental health problems. Suicide rates among drivers are high so waiting over 14 weeks for treatment is completely unacceptable,” he said.

“We need an urgent action to address the clear failings in our industry. This study confirms the experience of many truck drivers, their families and those of us who work closely with them.”

The Monash University study can be viewed at www.drivinghealth.net/

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