What can we learn from Australia?
I think we need to be a bit wary about cross country comparisons as there are so many other factors that may influence the numbers. There is no direct industry comparison in this report between Aus and NZ. The different proportions of high risk industries may skew the overall data, as may the proportion of SMEs, but we don't know.
Also, although the overall incidence appears higher in NZ, the percentage of injuries above 6 weeks time off is far higher in Australia and >1year is three time higher over there. Is this to do with the injuries, or the way the different compensation schemes work? If the injuries, does this mean we're actually performing better over here in terms of those very long term/permanent major injuries?
The important question to me is not the comparison, but why the NZ figures have gone up significantly and understanding whether this is a real increase or a change in reporting/systems? Is this us getting worse, or stopping fudging our numbers to avoid arbitrary LTI definitions? The latter would tally well with an increase in overall rates, but a lower proportion of very long term impacts. But I wouldn't like to speculate without better understanding of all the underlying factors, which we don't get from this.