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Workers Compensation Commission Self-Insurers Forum Workers Compensation Commission Self-Insurers Forum

Recent developments in the Commission New President and Registrar appointed in late 2007 Major Recent developments in the Commission New President and Registrar appointed in late 2007 Major client survey and organisational review conducted in 2008 Number of significant changes introduced or being implemented 2

Some recent changes Ø Professional Development Framework for Arbitrators and Approved Medical Specialists Ø Some recent changes Ø Professional Development Framework for Arbitrators and Approved Medical Specialists Ø Consolidated Medical Appeal Panels Ø Key Performance Indicators Framework Ø Regional Venues Review Ø Forms Review Ø New Recording Software 3

Future changes n Internal restructure n Transition from contractors to inhouse Arbitrators n Coordination Future changes n Internal restructure n Transition from contractors to inhouse Arbitrators n Coordination of regional hearings n Electronic lodgment 4

Professional Development Frameworks AIM – to improve the quality of decision-making Key Components § Professional Development Frameworks AIM – to improve the quality of decision-making Key Components § Competency Framework § Performance indicators / measures linked to framework § Self Development Plans § Peer Review § Performance Appraisal 5

Uses of the competency framework The foundation for: Ø self assessment Ø peer review Uses of the competency framework The foundation for: Ø self assessment Ø peer review Ø Appraisal Ø design and development of professional developments opportunities including conferences 6

Arbitrator Framework of Competency A. B. C. D. E. F. Knowledge and values Communication Arbitrator Framework of Competency A. B. C. D. E. F. Knowledge and values Communication Conduct of cases Evidence Decision-making Facilitation, case management and administrative skills 7

AMS Framework of Competency A. B. C. D. E. Knowledge and values Communication Conduct AMS Framework of Competency A. B. C. D. E. Knowledge and values Communication Conduct of Medical Assessment Report of Medical Assessment Case management and administrative skills 8

Consolidated Medical Appeal Panels Aim – to improve consistency and timeframes of Medical Appeal Consolidated Medical Appeal Panels Aim – to improve consistency and timeframes of Medical Appeal Panels Significantly reduced number of Arbitrators and Approved Medical Specialists who sit on panels. Ø 2007 Approx. 50 Arbitrators, 120 AMS Ø 2008 15 Arbitrators, 20 AMS (Primary) Preliminary results: § § § decrease in average time taken from 106 days to 95 days decrease in medical appeal rate from 21 per cent (Feb 08 to 11 per cent (Jan 09) decrease in revocation rate from 21 per cent (Feb 08) to 5 per cent (Jan 09) 9

Key Performance Indicators Aim – to provide information targeted at various levels 1. Corporate Key Performance Indicators Aim – to provide information targeted at various levels 1. Corporate Key Performance Indicators 2. Management Performance Indicators 3. Operational Performance Indicators 4. Support Performance Indicators 5. Service Standards The framework provides for both outcome and output based performance indicators 10

Key Performance Indicators §Measures performance of Commission against legislative objectives §Basis formal reporting to Key Performance Indicators §Measures performance of Commission against legislative objectives §Basis formal reporting to Minister §Public release in the Annual Review §External publication includes statistics on workloads and throughputs e. g. counts of new and finalised applications by type, outcomes for applications and work in progress 11

Time taken to resolve matters 12 Time taken to resolve matters 12

Time taken to resolve matters 13 Time taken to resolve matters 13

Time taken to resolve matters 14 Time taken to resolve matters 14

Regional Venues Aim: Regional service provision to be better coordinated and more efficiently delivered Regional Venues Aim: Regional service provision to be better coordinated and more efficiently delivered § § § Reduce number of approved locations from 48 to 16 locations across New South Wales Review quality and adequacy of existing venues at each location Better coordination of regional hearings 15

New Recording Software 2008 - piloted the use of two voice recording hearing rooms New Recording Software 2008 - piloted the use of two voice recording hearing rooms on level 21 of the Commission’s Oxford St premises. 2009 – progressive roll out of the new technology to the remaining hearing and conference rooms on level 21. 16

Some observations for Respondents § Some insurers are briefing too late (leads to problems Some observations for Respondents § Some insurers are briefing too late (leads to problems at t/c with respondent lawyers being unavailable or not properly prepared) § Focus on early exchange – don’t wait unit you’re in the Commission before seeking GP / hospital notes § Lack of clarity around lead agent provisions § Scatter gun approach – don’t say it’s in dispute if it isn’t! 17

Some observations for Respondents § Parties can agree on an Approved Medical Specialist § Some observations for Respondents § Parties can agree on an Approved Medical Specialist § Check the AMS referral document – don’t wait until after a Medical Assessment Certificate has been issued to make objections § Reconsideration power § Uplift in costs for complexity 18

General Points to remember n At no stage do any of the parties contact General Points to remember n At no stage do any of the parties contact the AMS n The insurer does not arrange the examination or instruct the AMS n The WCC makes all arrangements with the AMS n n instructs the AMS and informs the parties of the outcome 19

WPI Thresholds 1% - 9% WPI entitled to s 66 only n 6% binaural WPI Thresholds 1% - 9% WPI entitled to s 66 only n 6% binaural hearing loss to be entitled to a lump sum – s 69 A n 10% WPI and over to receive s 67 n 15% WPI to receive Ss 66 or 67 for psychiatric injury n 15% WPI to get domestic assistance – s 60 AA n 15% WPI to make a Work Injury Damages claim n 15% WPI to commute n HIV/AIDS automatically pays 100% WPI and maximum amount for Pain & Suffering n 20

Deduction for Pre-existing condition or injury n For injuries before 1 Jan 2002 and Deduction for Pre-existing condition or injury n For injuries before 1 Jan 2002 and n For injuries on and after 1 Jan 2002 n deductions are now governed by S 323 of the WIM Act & the Work. Cover Guides n under s 323 if it is too difficult or expensive to assess pre-existing impairment the AMS will deduct 10 per cent 21

Section 8 – Work Injury Damages n n n Before a worker can bring Section 8 – Work Injury Damages n n n Before a worker can bring a claim for damages the worker must have 15% WPI This applies no matter when the injury occurred If the injury occurred before 1 Jan 2002 n worker must be re-assessed on WPI basis – i. e. % loss converted to WPI 22

Contact Details n Telephone: 8281 6350 n Email: sian. leathem@wcc. nsw. gov. au n Contact Details n Telephone: 8281 6350 n Email: sian. [email protected] nsw. gov. au n Website: www. wcc. nsw. gov. au 23