A single complaint can raise multiple issues, with each recorded individually. The three issues most often raised were:
We implemented a new benefit payments processing system in November 2010. Initial system issues led to some processing delays, but these were resolved in January 2011.
We are continuing to explore ways to improve the processing of benefits for injured workers. One recent initiative allows us to email a remittance advice on the same day as payments are processed.
In February 2011 we implemented a new service delivery model for managing claims for compensation. One initiative was to improve communication, with Claims Services Officers (CSOs) encouraged to have more telephone contact with injured workers, employers and service providers.
CSOs are also now required to contact injured workers at specific points in the claims processes. Those points include the registration of a new claim, advising of adverse decisions and when a new CSO takes over management of a claim.
Other initiatives improved the decision support tools available to assist CSOs including better access to technical advice, legal advice and the implementation of quality assurance processes. The introduced as part of the new service delivery model was the introduction of a Clinical Panel, consisting initially of a GP, psychologist, pharmacist and physiotherapist. The key role of the Clinical Panel is to initiate peer contact and conversations with an injured worker’s treating doctors, allowing them to gain an insight and understanding of the management of the compensable condition(s). Panel members are then able to provide expert advice to CSOs leading to improved decision making.
Further complaint information can be found under the Privacy and Ombudsman sections of this Annual Report.