Injured workers' relief

Angela Catallo
Professional Support Officer

Changes allow doctor to prescribe treatment sooner

Since the state government moved to reduce the rights of injured workers in 2012, Federation has worked with other unions to reverse the worst of the changes. The latest action improves access to medical treatment.

The Guidelines for Claiming Workers Compensation, current as of August 1, enable your nominated GP to authorise a wider range of treatments without having to seek prior approval from the insurance company. Before this change, doctors only had a 48-hour window after an injury to approve treatment such as physiotherapy or counselling.

Pre-approval from the insurer is no longer needed for: any treatment by your doctor in the first month; any X-rays in the first two weeks; any prescriptions in the first three months if they are on the Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme; up to eight visits in the first three months if your doctor sends you to an approved physiotherapist, osteopath, chiropractor, accredited exercise physiologist, psychologist or counsellor and up to $100 in related expenses e.g. strapping tape or relaxation CDs; any specialist your doctor refers you to in the first three months; any ultrasounds, CT scans or MRIs recommended by a specialist in the first three months; initial assessment to determine industrial hearing loss.