It’s unclear if Victorian Premier Daniel Andrews will return to work in 10 days, although his deputy insists he’s making steady progress after a serious back injury.
Mr Andrews suffered broken ribs and a fractured T7 vertebra after slipping on wet stairs at a holiday home on the Mornington Peninsula on March 9.
The 48-year-old was released from hospital on March 15 and has been recovering at home since.
At the time he said he would require at least six weeks off to recover.
Deputy Premier James Merlino has been acting premier in his absence.
“This was a nasty, nasty injury. Fractured ribs, fractured vertebrae. He’s very, very lucky and that was the message from his doctors when he got discharged (from hospital),” Mr Merlino said on Thursday.
“But Dan’s doctors are pleased he’s making good progress.”
Asked if the Premier would return to work as planned in 10 days, Mr Merlino replied: “He’ll come back when his doctors say he’s able to come back”.
“Over the next couple of weeks, he’ll get advice from his doctors in terms of when it’s appropriate to return, but they’re pleased with his recovery.
“Anyone with a severe back injury will know that the recovery is tough and everyone’s different, of course, but doctors are pleased.”
Mr Merlino is in regular contact with Mr Andrews on important issues but, for the most part, he was “leaving him alone to focus on his recovery”.
Earlier in April, Mr Andrews took to social media to wish Victorians a happy Easter and provide an update on his recovery.
“I’m making steady progress and being diligent with my physio exercises,” he said.
“Also building up my walking and am up to about 18 minutes on my daily walk.”
The Premier, who narrowly avoided permanent damage to his spinal cord, thanked the community for their well wishes since his injury.
“They’ve really helped me to keep my spirits up in what’s been a pretty painful time.”