THE LIFETIME CARE AND SUPPORT AUTHORITY OF NSW
Mission: The Lifetime Care and Support Scheme provides treatment, rehabilitation and care to people severely injured in a motor accident in NSW, regardless of fault.
The Lifetime Care and Support Scheme provides treatment, rehabilitation and care to people severely injured in a motor accident in NSW, regardless of fault. The injuries covered by the Scheme include spinal cord injury, moderate to severe brain injury, multiple amputations, serious burns or blindness from a motor accident in NSW. The Scheme is funded by a levy collected through Compulsory Third Party (CTP) green slip premiums. The Scheme commenced for children under 16 years injured in a motor accident from 1 October 2006 and for everyone from 1 October 2007.
Eligibility for the Scheme is determined by the type and severity of injury as specified in the Lifetime Care and Support Guidelines. For spinal cord injury, the injury must result in permanent neurological deficit. For brain injury the injured person must have had post-traumatic amnesia for longer than seven days and score five or less on any of the items on the Functional Index Measure.
Determining eligibility for the Scheme is a two-stage process. Eligibility for interim participation in the Scheme is assessed soon after injury and, where possible, prior to discharge from hospital to allow for the early planning of services and supports. Interim participation is for a period of two years. Eligibility for lifetime participation is assessed before the expiry of the two-year interim period.
Children under 16 years who are not eligible for lifetime participation may then have their treatment, rehabilitation and care costs paid for by the CTP insurer as part of the no-fault provisions for children introduced in 2006. Adults who are not eligible for lifetime participation who also have a CTP claim will then have their treatment, rehabilitation and care expenses paid for by the CTP insurer.
Approximately 130 people per year will become lifetime participants in the Scheme. Currently 29% of participants are under 20 years of age and 45% under 25 years. Surprisingly, 12% of participants are over 65 years of age. Seventy percent are male. There are currently 315 participants in the Scheme, 65 with a spinal cord injury. Twenty-one percent of participants sustained their injury on a motor cycle, the majority in single vehicle accidents.
The Scheme’s vision is that people with severe disabilities have the greatest possible opportunities and choices in their life. Effective and timely rehabilitation is essential. Identifying and addressing early factors, which impede recovery is important and the Authority is a keen supporter of the Guidelines on Psychosocial Care of People with a Spinal Cord Injury currently being trialled in NSW Spinal Cord Injury Units.In the near future the Authority plans to focus on improving employment outcomes for people with severe injuries.
For more information visit lifetimecare.nsw.gov.au