News » ACC refuses 4 in 5 shoulder surgery requests

Press Release – 17 December 2009:   In Parliament’s question time on Tuesday Labour’s Ruth Dyson asked the Minister for ACC why ACC are rejecting 80% of shoulder surgery requests. Pansy Wong responded by saying “there are protocols for assessments for acceptance of coverage.” Access Support Services questions the Minister’s response.

“The protocols Ms Wong talks about appear to be little more than arbitrary decision by the ACC” says Mr Wadsworth, who heads the advocacy service.

Over the last year Access Support Services has experienced a large increase in claimants wanting to challenge ACC’s shoulder surgery decisions. “This has been unprecedented in the 8 years we have been operating” says Mr Wadsworth.

Access Support Services has successfully overturned a significant majority of these decisions taken to review on behalf of claimants. Even where the evidence overwhelmingly supports the claimant ACC will not concede the matter. It appears ACC prefers playing a numbers game knowing only a small percentage of claimants will review its decisions.

“We encourage claimants whose surgeons have been declined funding for shoulder surgery to challenge these decisions” says Mr Wadsworth. “Our experience is the odds of overturning the decisions are high providing you engage experienced representation.”

Reference: Parliament question time – 15/12/09

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