Written Communications Portfolio

The Written Communications Portfolio (WCP) is a mandatory exit assessment for AFOEM Stage C trainees. The portfolio assesses a trainee’s ability to convey written information effectively and appropriately in a variety of scenarios.

Trainees are ineligible to submit their WCP if they haven’t completed Stage B.

WCPs are due 31 March of each year.

The WCP includes two reports based on individual cases: Workplace Assessment Report and Medicolegal Report.

General requirements

Confidentiality must be applied to reports with all content de-identified to ensure personal and commercial confidentiality. Don’t use individual, company or location names in your reports.

Reports must also display an understanding of legal requirements across informed consent, human rights legislation, privacy legislation and natural justice.

Assume that your audience is an intelligent non-expert only that doesn't hold specialist knowledge. Readers of your report may include colleagues, health professionals, employers, contractors, insurers, lawyers, the community, media representatives, patients or employees.


Workplace Assessment Report

The Workplace Assessment Report must assess a health issue, for example musculoskeletal, psychological or respiratory symptoms that is affecting an individual or a group at a workstation or during a work process.

A general workplace hazard assessment is not appropriate for this report.

In your recommendations, any emphasis for action should relate to remediation or prevention, like changes in occupational hygiene or ergonomics, rather than refer to legal consequences.

Report criteria

  • It is original and exclusive work of the trainee and is expected to be of a commercial/professional standard
  • Based on a real and current workplace assessment that the trainee must have direct involvement in assessing and not an entire file review of third party information
  • 1000 to 2500 words in length
  • Submitted with a cover sheet describing the context and purpose of the report

Cover sheet criteria

The cover sheet addresses the who, what, why and what not issues that determine the emphasis and style of the report, which includes:

  • what issue led to the need for the report, including how and when the issue occurred
  • purpose of the report
  • the status of the person for whom the report was prepared
  • the constraints around what processes and sites were and weren't included
  • ethical issues that affected what was done or who was involved

The cover sheet is to be a maximum of 300 words in length.

Assessment criteria

The assessment criteria are comprised of three areas that determine how your Workplace Assessment Report is marked.

Language and structure addresses how well the report serves to build understanding for the designated reader. It includes:

  • appropriate word count length
  • use of terminology suited to the person/agency for whom the report was prepared, for example a solicitor, an insurance claims officer or the union
  • conventional grammar, punctuation, style abbreviations and necessary specialist terms explained in concise language
  • information arranged logically
  • avoidance of non-pertinent information

Analysis/Appraisal addresses the selection of observations to fit the purpose of the report, which covers the:

  • orderly statement of relevant information
  • results of relevant special tests or other relevant records reference to published articles, algorithms, other externally sourced information where relevant
  • deductions/inferences and how these were based

Conclusions and recommendations address how well the report has presented its purpose, whether its limitations are made explicit and recommendations are apt, including:

  • summary of findings
  • the practicability and specificity of recommendations in relation to the issue

Report checklist

Have you:

  • included a personal visit to the workplace rather than a description of it?
  • analysed and confirmed that tasks identified are part of the inherent requirement of the role?
  • utilised objective findings, on examination or in the workplace, for recommendations rather than relying solely on subjective descriptions?
  • are advised of work restrictions: are they available, realistic and easy to follow?
  • considered relevant legislation or known industry standards?
  • reviewed photos and references to ensure they are clear, useful and relevant?
  • ensured consistency throughout the report with conclusions that address the hazards/risks identified in other sections?
  • explained with evidence why the recommendations will help?

Medicolegal Report

Report criteria

  • It is original and exclusive work of the trainee and is expected to be of a commercial/professional standard
  • Based on a real and current medicolegal report
  • 1000 to 2500 words in length
  • The trainee must have had direct involvement in assessing the worker and formulating an opinion and not an entire file review of third party information
  • Submitted with a cover sheet describing the context and purpose of the report

Cover sheet criteria

The cover sheet describes the who, what and why issues that will determine the emphasis and tone of the report, including:

  • the status of the person for whom the report was prepared
  • the author’s role in the situation, for example the author is the treater, the agent for insurer, the solicitor or the union
  • the qualification to comment
  • what the purpose(s) was for the report request, for example a delayed return to work, including where to the relevant legislation where appropriate
  • the nature of previous similar or related reports where relevant
  • the constraints around any relevant information that was unavailable for inclusion
  • ethical issues that affected what was done or who was included

The cover sheet is to be a maximum if 300 words in length.

Assessment criteria

The assessment criteria are comprised of three areas that determine how your medicolegal report is marked.

Language and structure addresses how well the report serves to build understanding for the designated reader, including:

  • appropriate word count length
  • use of terminology suited to the person/agency for whom the report was prepared, for an example a solicitor, an insurance claims officer, the union
  • conventional grammar, punctuation, style abbreviations and necessary specialist terms explained in concise language
  • information arranged logically
  • avoidance of non-pertinent information

Analysis/Appraisal addresses the selection of observations to fit the purpose of the report, which covers the:

  • orderly statement of relevant information
  • relevant results of special tests or other record references to published articles, as well as algorithms and other externally sourced information where applicable
  • deductions/inferences and how these were based

Conclusions and recommendations addresses how well the report is presented its purpose, whether its limitations are made explicit and recommendations are apt, including:

  • summary of findings
  • practicable and specific recommendations to the issue

Report checklist

Have you:

  • included a personal assessment of the individual rather than a third-party file review? 
  • analysed and confirmed that tasks identified are part of the inherent requirement of the role?
  • utilised objective findings, on examination, and level of function information for recommendations?
  • considered if any advised work restrictions are available, realistic and easy to follow?
  • considered relevant legislation or known industry standards?
  • checked that any quoted references are clear, useful and relevant?
  • ensured consistency throughout the report with conclusions that address the findings observed in other sections of the report?
  • explained with evidence why the recommendations will help?
  • provided an opinion and justified it?

Portfolio submission

Reports are to be submitted with a completed Written Communication Portfolio Cover Sheet via email to OccEnvMed@racp.edu.au by 31 March of each year.

Assessment process

Portfolio assessment is a two-step process:

  1. Examiners, appointed by the Assessment Subcommittee, mark the reports. The reports are judged on style, format, grammar, punctuation, compliance with word limit and medical/professional content.
  2. Note: At least two examiners assess each Written Communications Portfolio. Candidates must achieve a satisfactory standard in both reports to achieve a ‘pass'.

  3. Candidates receive their portfolio back for revision and correction (and resubmission) where necessary

If one or both reports do not meet the standards, you will be provided with feedback and asked to amend and resubmit the relevant report(s).

If your one or both of your resubmitted reports still don’t meet the requirements, you will be required to submit an entirely new portfolio, including two new reports, in the next WCP round in March of the following year.

During this time, you must continue to remain in active training.


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2018 AFOEM Annual Training Meeting WCP presentation

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