4th australasian compensation health research forum

4TH AUSTRALASIAN
COMPENSATION
HEALTH RESEARCH
FORUM
The influence of mental health
and psychosocial factors on
recovery outcomes
19 November 2014
Grand Hyatt, Melbourne, Australia
PROGRAM & ABSTRACT BOOK
Notes
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Contents
5
Welcome
6
Program committee
7
Convenors
8
General information
9
Sessions 1 & 2: Keynote speakers
11 Final session
12 ACHRF 2014 program
14 Posters
15 Abstracts
21 Key participants
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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Welcome
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
On behalf of the Program Committee, it is my pleasure to welcome you to Melbourne
for the 4th Australasian Compensation Health Research Forum (ACHRF).
This year the Forum is hosted by the Institute for Safety, Compensation and Recovery
Research (ISCRR) and the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) of New Zealand.
The theme for this year is the “Influence of mental health and psychosocial factors on
recovery outcomes”. We aim to encourage interactive dialogue and debate through
our keynote speakers, presenters and panel members.
During this one day Forum our sessions will focus on:
• Mental Health and Recovery After Injury opening keynote address by Associate
Professor Meaghan O’Donnell, University of Melbourne,
• Innovative Practices to Improve Recovery of Workers: Focusing on Psychosocial Factors
at the Front End and Tail End of the Claim second keynote address by Dr Renee-Louise
Franche, WorkSafe BC, Canada, and
• The Influence of mental health and psychosocial factors on recovery outcome: Setting
the Research Agenda – what end users have to say an exciting panel session chaired
by the distinguished Tom Shakespeare from the United Kingdom.
These sessions will be complemented by a series of concurrent presentations highlighting
the best research in this field that Australia and New Zealand has to offer.
As usual the program has been designed to provide plenty of opportunity for dialogue
and interaction between attendees and to prompt debate and discussion. My thanks to
the Program Committee and PIEF who have worked tirelessly to put together what
promises to be a very rewarding event in Melbourne.
Thank you for attending. I hope that you enjoy this Forum and gain inspiration from it.
Professor Alex Collie
CEO of ISCRR
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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Program Committee
Verna Smith
Institute for Safety Compensation and Recovery Research - Chair
Rita McCullagh
Institute for Safety Compensation and Recovery Research
Erin Middleton
Institute for Safety Compensation and Recovery Research
Grant Pittams
Accident Compensation Commission New Zealand
John Wren
Accident Compensation Commission New Zealand
Marilyn Baker
Accident Compensation Commission New Zealand
Cathy Pilecki
Motor Accident Insurance Commission
Darnel Murgatroyd
Motor Accidents Authority
Sarah Derrett
Massey University, New Zealand
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Convenors
The Institute for Safety, Compensation and Recovery Research (ISCRR) The Institute for Safety,
Compensation and Recovery Research (ISCRR) is a research-policy partnership established in
2009 via an agreement between the Victorian WorkCover Authority (VWA), the Transport
Accident Commission (TAC) and Monash University.
The three partner organisations provide support and funding. The partnership consists of staff
located in our main office, researchers distributed across our Monash University network, and
formal and informal links into our policy partners, the TAC and the VWA.
In early 2014, the partners entered into a new agreement, committing approximately $29 million
in funding and in-kind support to partnership activities over the period to 30 June 2018.
The Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) is the Crown entity set up under the Accident
Compensation Act 2001, to deliver New Zealand’s accident insurance scheme (the Scheme).
It is governed by a board appointed by the Minister for ACC. The purpose of the Scheme is to
deliver no-fault personal injury cover for everyone in New Zealand, including overseas visitors.
Under the Scheme, individuals forego the right to sue for compensatory damages following an
injury, in return for receiving personal injury cover. ACC’s role is to manage the Scheme in a
cost-effective, outcome-focused way that ensures the Scheme is financially sustainable for
future generations.
The 4th Australasian Compensation Health Research Forum 2014 follows the International
Forum of Disability Management Conference (IFDM) and will be held at the same venue.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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General Information
Forum Venue
Grand Hyatt, Collins Street, Melbourne
Registration Desk
The registration desk is located in the Pre-Function Area. Staff at the registration desk are
happy to help with any queries.
Speaker Preparation Area
There will be a speaker preparation area located near the registration desk. We ask that you
check in with the audio visual technician at least 2 hours prior to your scheduled presentation.
Poster Area
Poster abstracts are listed in numerical order and can be found in the abstracts section of
this handbook. Posters will be displayed convenient to the Forum area and remain on display
throughout the Forum, on Wednesday 19 November from 10.30am to 5pm.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Sessions 1 and 2: Keynote Speakers
Associate Professor Meaghan O’Donnell, University of Melbourne
BAppSc(N), BSc(Hons), MPsy(Clin), PhD
Associate Professor Meaghan O’Donnell is the Director of Research at the Australian Centre
for Posttraumatic Mental Health (ACPMH), and Associate Professor in the Department of
Psychiatry, University of Melbourne. She has published over 70 peer reviewed articles in the
area of posttraumatic mental health. Her major areas of research include early interventions
after trauma exposure, phenomenology of traumatic stress responses, and disability after
trauma. She is currently the vice president of the International Society of Traumatic Stress
Studies, and is on the editorial board for the European Journal of Traumatic Stress Studies.
Abstract
Associate Prof. Meaghan O’Donnell, University of Melbourne
Wednesday 19th November 9.10am
Keynote Address: Mental Health and Recovery After Injury
The new Global Burden of Disease Study (Murray etal 2012) highlights that road injury now
accounts for 76 million disability adjusted life years. At the same time the burden of mental
illness increased by 38% from 1990 to 2010. This presentation will discuss the intersect
between mental illness and injury, and its relevance for the compensation space. It will
address the prevalence of psychiatric disorders after injury, the psychosocial pathways to
disability, and some recent work that investigates compensation related factors that may
contribute to poor health outcomes. Importantly this presentation will examine promising
research that aims to change injury psychosocial health trajectories to maximise recovery.
Murray, C. et al. (2012). Disability-adjusted life years (DALYs) for 291 diseases and injuries
in 21 regions, 1990-2010: a systematic analysis for the Global Burden of Disease Study 2010.
The Lancet, 380(9859), 2197-2223.
Panel Session
Panel Chair
Prof. Kathryn McPherson, Director of the Person Centered Research Centre,
Auckland University of Technology
Panel Members
Prof. Ian Cameron, The University of Sydney
Hugh Norriss, Director Development & Policy, Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand
Associate Prof. Meaghan O’Donnell, The University of Melbourne
Panel Discussion
Reflections and Development of a Research Response to the Presentation
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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Senior Psychology Advisor Renée-Louise Franche, WorkSafe BC,
Vancouver Canada. Ph.D., R. Psych.
Renée-Louise Franche, Clinical Psychologist, is a Senior Psychology Advisor at WorkSafe
BC, Adjunct Scientist at the Institute for Work & Health, Toronto, Adjunct Professor at Simon
Fraser University and at the University of British Columbia. She is a consultant in Work
Disability Prevention and Occupational Health. She has published over 50 peer reviewed
articles in the area of work disability prevention. Dr. Franche’s work focuses on developing
a better understanding of how insurer, organisational, healthcare, and individual factors
contribute to safe, sustainable, and healthy return to work following injury or ill health. She
has led the development of Best Practices for return-to-work/stay-at-work interventions for
workers with mental health conditions, and led a cohort study of injured workers focusing
on quality of life, mental health, and work accommodation issues. Throughout her career,
she has been committed to bridging the gap between research and practice by bringing
evidence-based practices to a wide range of audiences, and by striving to include multiple
stakeholder perspectives in the process, from the frontline workers to policymakers.
Abstract
Dr Renée-Louise Franche, WorkSafe BC
Wednesday 19th November 11am
Keynote Address: Innovative Practices to Improve Recovery of Workers: Focusing on Psychosocial
Factors at the Front End and Tail End of the Claim
Recent evidence points to the salience of mental and other psychosocial factors as risk
factors, for both physical and mental health claims, for prolonged duration of absence and
even no return to work. This evidence will first be briefly reviewed in this presentation. The
importance of screening workers early on in the claim process to identify those workers most
at risk of poor recovery outcomes and of prolonged work absence will then be discussed.
Evidenced-based screening measures of the early risk factors will be presented, as well as
concrete examples of how they have been implemented in Canada in compensation systems.
The second part of the presentation will focus on the tail end of the claim, involving Gradual
return-to-work (GRTW) and Vocational Rehabilitation (VR). Evidence-based Best Practices
regarding psychological treatment of workers with mental health condition, as they relate to
improving return-to-work outcomes in claimants, will be presented. The challenge of defining
and respecting psychological work restrictions and limitations in the context of GRTW and
VR will be discussed, as it relates to work conditions, and not only job duties and tasks. New
potential ways to move forward, in terms of policy and practice, to improve recovery outcomes
during the GRTW and VR processes will be presented.
Panel Session
Panel Chair
Ms Denise Cosgrove, CEO, Victorian WorkCover Authority
Panel Members
Dr Renée-Louise Franche. WorkSafe BC
Dr Kris Fernando, National Manager Psychology and Mental Health, ACC
Janine Reid, Legal Counsel, WorkCover Queensland
Mr Michael Francis, General Manager, Scheme Improvement & Regulation, WorkCover SA
Panel Discussion
Reflections and Development of a Policy Response to the Presentation
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Final session
Panel Session Chair: Tom Shakespeare, UEA Medical School
Tom trained in sociology at Cambridge, and has researched and taught at the Universities
of Cambridge, Sunderland, Leeds, and Newcastle. He is currently senior lecturer in medical
sociology at the University of East Anglia Medical School. His research interests center on
disability studies and bioethics. His books include The Sexual Politics of Disability (1996),
Genetic Politics (2002) and Disability Rights and Wrongs (2006). From 2008-2013, he was
part of the Department of Violence and Injury Prevention and Disability at the World Health
Organization, Geneva, where he helped write and edit the World Report on Disability (WHO
2011). He has been involved in the disability movement for 25 years.
Session Summary
Wednesday 19th November 3.40pm
Panel Discussion: Setting the Research Agenda for mental health and psychosocial factors on
recovery outcomes – what end users have to say
At the 2013 ACHRF a World Café was held to capture the knowledge and experiences of a
wide range of stakeholders including industry experts, academics, scheme representatives
and end-users themselves about the role of end-users in research, practice and policy.
The World Café allowed for the breakdown of barriers and provided the opportunity for
building trust and respect, and better partnerships by providing a space for all to be heard.
A key outcome was the recognition of end-users as defined as people with an injury or
disability that need support, treatment, rehabilitation and care or compensation, and their
families need to be involved in setting the research agenda. This panel session will include
end-user representatives as well as cultural diversity and clinical practice representatives.
The session will aim to build on the outcomes of the 2013 forum by facilitating a dialogue
between end users, researchers, clinicians, policy makers and service providers to generate
the key questions that are important to this community.
Panel Session
Panel Members
Kurutia Seymour, ACC NZ
Nick Rushworth, Brain Injury Australia
Prof. Malcom Hopwood, The University of Melbourne
Dr Anne Daly, Health and Disability Strategy Group, Victorian Work Cover Authority
and the Transport Accident Commission
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN
COMPENSATION
HEALTH RESEARCH
FORUM PROGRAM
WEDNESDAY 19 NOVEMBER 2014
The Influence of mental health and psychosocial factors on recovery outcomes
Time
Event
8.00am
Registration opens – arrival tea/coffee
9.00am
Welcome to Australasian Compensation Health Research Forum
Paul Shannon, Chairman ISCRR Board
9.10am
Keynote Address
Mental Health and Recovery After Injury
Associate Prof. Meaghan O’Donnell. The University of Melbourne.
Panel discussion
Reflections and development of a research response to the presentation
Panel members
Prof. Kathryn McPherson, Director of the Person Centered Research Centre, Auckland University
of Technology (Chair)
Prof. Ian Cameron, The University of Sydney
Hugh Norriss, Director Development & Policy, Mental Health Foundation of New Zealand.
10:30am
MORNING TEA
11.00am
Keynote Address
Innovative Practices to Improve Recovery of Workers: Focusing on Psychosocial Factors at the Front End and
Tail End of the Claim
Dr Renée-Louise Franche. WorkSafe BC
Panel discussion
Reflections and development of a policy response to the presentation
Panel members
Ms Denise Cosgrove, CEO, Victorian WorkCover Authority (Chair)
Dr Kris Fernando, National Manager Psychology and Mental Health, ACC
Janine Reid, Legal Counsel, WorkCover Queensland
Mr Michael Francis, General Manager, Scheme Improvement & Regulation, WorkCover SA
12.30pm
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LUNCH AND POSTER DISPLAY
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Time
Event
1.30pm
CONCURRENT SESSION 1
CONCURRENT SESSION 2
CONCURRENT SESSION 3
Maximising Quality of Life after
Serious Injury
Designing interventions to
facilitate return to work
Influence of psychosocial
actors on recovery outcomes
Savoy 1
Savoy 2
Savoy 3
Chair
Cathy Pilecki
Chair
Darnel Murgatroyd
Chair
Dr Kris Fernando
Efficacy of Motivational
Interviewing and Cognitive
Behavioural Therapy for
anxiety and depression after
Traumatic Brain Injury.
Do pain management
programs keep working for
compensable patients?
A three year follow up.
The effect of mental health on
long-term recovery following
a road traffic crash: Results
from the UQ SuPPORT study.
Dr Anne Daly,
Health and Disability Strategy
Group, Victorian Work Cover
Authority and the Transport
Accident Commission
Erin Brown,
The University of Queensland,
Australia
Early learnings from the
implementation of an
Individualised Funding model
for seriously injured clients.
The effects of a health
provider network on costs
and return to work in the
compensable setting.
Psychosocial determinants of
recovery in adults with spinal
cord injury.
Fiona Cromarty,
Transport Accident
Commission, Australia
Dr Tania Pizzari,
La Trobe University
Prof. Ashley Craig,
The University of Sydney,
Australia
Early stage findings from the
development of a longitudinal
study of long-term claimants
to ACC in New Zealand.
Right Intervention at the
right time: working with
complexity, mental health
and disability in Victorian
compensation settings.
The influence of pre-injury
psychosocial factors on
vocational outcomes in New
Zealand: A prospective study
of ACC entitlement claimants.
Karen Sait,
Transport Accident
Commission, Australia
Dr Rebbecca Lilley,
University of Otago,
New Zealand
Supporting the sustainability
of family care under ‘no fault’
vs ‘fault-based’ insurance
contexts’.
Mental Health Claims
Management and Return to
Work: Qualitative Insights
from Melbourne, Australia.
Dr Rosamund Harrington,
Australia Catholic University
Dr Bianca Brijnath,
Monash University, Australia
Use of Antidepressants before
and after road traffic injury:
insights from Data Linkage of
Medicare and Compensable
Injury Claims in Victoria,
Australia.
1.35pm
Prof. Jennie Ponsford,
Monash University
1.55pm
2.15pm
Sally Faisandier,
Accident Compensation
Corporation, New Zealand
2.35pm
Dr Janneke Berecki-Gisolf,
Monash University, Australia
3.00pm
AFTERNOON TEA
3.40pm
Panel session
Setting the Research Agenda for mental health and psychosocial factors on recovery
outcomes – what end users have to say
Chair
Tom Shakespeare, UEA Medical School
Panel members
Kurutia Seymour, ACC NZ
Nick Rushworth, Brain Injury Australia
Prof. Malcom Hopwood, The University of Melbourne
Dr Anne Daly, Health and Disability Strategy Group, Victorian Work Cover Authority and the
Transport Accident Commission
4.50pm
CLOSE
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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Posters
The posters will be displayed on Wednesday 19 November
at 1030 hours, and closing at 1700 hours. Awards will be
announced after the final ACHRF session.
Poster 1
Poster 7
A unique data platform supporting research –
the Compensation Research Database.
Early Access to vocational rehabilitation services for spinal
cord injury patients: Towards enhanced psychological
functioning and improved vocational achievement
Samantha Barker. Institute for Safety Compensation
and Recovery Research
Poster 2
Health outcomes following road injury in older people
Katherine Brown, Rebbecca Ivers and Ian Cameron.
The George Institute for Global Health, Sydney.
Poster 3
Visualising the Return to work process
Richard Cooney, Nifeli Stewart and Tania Ivanka.
Dept of Management, Monash University
Poster 4
A prospective analysis of quality of life in people with
spinal cord injury as a function of compensable status
Ashley Craig, Rebecca Guest, Ian Cameron and James
Middleton. Sydney Medical School, The University of
Sydney
Poster 5
A hidden cost of mental health: Evidence from recovery
compensation linkage data in Victoria, Australia
Behrooz Hassani-Mahmooei, Janneke Berecki-Gisolf,
Youjin Hahn, Alex Collie and Rod McClure. Monash Injury
Research Institute, Monash University, Australia
Deborah Johnston1, Greg Murphy2, James Middleton1
and Ian Cameron1
1
Rehabilitation Studies Unit, Sydney Medical School,
University of Sydney, Australia
2
Latrobe University, Australia
Poster 8
The role of social support in physical health, pain and return
to work outcomes following musculoskeletal injury
Khic-Houy Prang, Janneke Berecki-Gisolf and Sharon
Newnam. Monash Injury Research Institute, Monash
University, Melbourne, Australia.
Poster 9
What impacts return to work for injured New Zealanders?
Finn Sigglekow. Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC)
Poster 10
The Optimal Return to Work Measure – a psychometric and
Rasch Analysis
Shane Compton and Peta Odgers. Social Research
Centre Poster 6
Factors influencing social and health outcomes after motor
vehicle crash injury: an inception cohort study protocol
Jagnoor Jagnoor and Ian Cameron. Motor Accident
Authority of NSW and the University of Sydney
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Abstracts
CONCURRENT SESSION 1
Maximising Quality of Life after Serious Injury
Prof. Jennie Ponsford
Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
(HADS) and a significantly greater reduction in depression
on a secondary outcome measure, the Depression scale
of the Depression Anxiety and Stress Scale at 30-weeks
post-baseline relative to the TAU control group. The
Treated groups also showed significantly greater gains
in psychosocial functioning on the Sydney Psychosocial
Reintegration Scale (SPRS) than TAU controls at 30 weeks.
Higher baseline anxiety and depression were associated
with greater response. The group receiving MI did not
show greater gains than the group receiving CBT only.
Authors
Conclusion
Efficacy of Motivational Interviewing and Cognitive
Behaviour Therapy for Anxiety and Depression following
Traumatic Brain Injury
Presenter
Jennie Ponsford1, Meaghan O’Donnell2, Nicole Lee3,
Dana Wong1, Adam McKay1, Kerrie Haines1,Yvette
Alway1, Marina Downing1, Christina Furtado1 and
Ming-Yun Hsieh1. 1) Monash-Epworth Rehabilitation
Research Centre, School of Psychological Sciences,
Monash University, Vic. 2) Australian Centre for
Posttraumatic Mental Health, University of Melbourne,
Vic. 3) National Centre for Education and Training on
Addiction, Flinders University, SA
The findings suggest that modified CBT provided with
booster sessions over extended periods may alleviate
anxiety and depression following TBI.
Early learnings from the implementation of an
individualised funding model for seriously injured
clients
Presenter
Fiona Cromarty
Transport Accident Commission, Victoria, Australia
Background
Anxiety and depression occur commonly following TBI,
often comorbidly. Effective psychological treatments are
needed to enhance psychosocial outcomes in this group.
Method
In a randomised controlled trial, this study used a
cognitive behaviour therapy (CBT)-based treatment
program adapted for individuals with moderate-severe
TBI. Motivational Interviewing (MI) was also evaluated
as a preparatory intervention to increase motivation to
change and engagement in treatment. Following diagnosis
of anxiety and/or depression using the Structured Clinical
Interview for DSM-IV diagnoses, 75 participants with TBI
(mean age 42.2 years, mean PTA 22 days) were randomly
assigned to one of three conditions, (1) MI+CBT (n=26), (2)
Non-directive counselling +CBT (n=23) (Treated groups)
and (3) treatment as usual (TAU) (control) (n=23). The
groups did not differ in baseline demographics, severity
of injury, depression, anxiety or cognitive function. The
3-week MI and 9-week CBT interventions were guided
by manuals adapted for participants with TBI, with
emphasis on flexibility to tailor therapy to individual
needs and cognitive difficulties. Three booster sessions
were provided during follow-up.
Results
68 participants completed 30-week follow-up. Using
intention to treat analyses, random effects regressions
revealed that the Treated groups showed a significantly
greater reduction in anxiety on the primary outcome
measure, the Hospital Anxiety and Depression Scale
Early learnings from the implementation of an
Individualised Funding model for seriously injured clients.
Individualised Funding (IF) is an innovative way of
supporting clients with catastrophic injuries to take
control of purchasing and managing the services they
need to meet their needs. The Transport Accident
Commission (TAC) developed the IF Model through a
co-design process where the views and needs of clients,
their families and providers were sought throughout the
build of the model and were integral to the development
of the end product.
IF involves the establishment of a yearly package of
funds for a client which is calculated based on a client’s
self-assessment of their needs as well as an understanding
of the client’s historical levels of servicing. Funds are
deposited monthly into a client’s TAC bank account and
the client identifies the services they need and the fee
they’re prepared to pay for that service. The relationship
exists between the client and the provider, without the
involvement of the TAC.
IF allows clients with long term support needs to exercise
choice and control over their services and is aligned to
the recently introduced federal NDIA objectives of client
choice and control. International best practice has
demonstrated that this level of empowerment allows
clients to best meet their needs in a timely manner,
improving both quality of life and independence outcomes.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
15
Early stage findings from the development of a
longitudinal study of long term claimants to ACC
in New Zealand
Supporting the sustainability of family care under no
fault vs fault based insurance contexts
Presenter
Dr Rosamund Harrington
Australia Catholic University, Brisbane, Australia
Sally Faisandier
Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC), New Zealand
Background
Presenter
Authors
ACC Research wishes to better understand the trajectories
of claimants who have had accidents. While some of this
group will be seriously injured, it is known that recovery
times and return to full functioning depends on a range
of personal and rehabilitative variables, many of which
are not well understood.
Rosamund Harrington1; Michele Foster2 and Jennifer
Fleming3. 1) School of Allied Health, Australian Catholic
University, Brisbane, Australia. 2) School of Social Work
and Human Services, The University of Queensland,
Brisbane, Australia. 3) School of Health and Rehabilitation
Sciences and Princess Alexandra Hospital, The University
of Queensland, Brisbane, Australia
Objectives
Background
The key objective is for ACC to better understand the
experiences and needs of claimants in order to:
Families play a key role in meeting the lifetime care and
support needs of catastrophically injured people and make
a significant economic contribution to society through the
care they provide. Identifying and implementing policies
and processes to support the sustainability of family care
is therefore vital.
• ensure that claimants receive optimal services for
their rehabilitation and ongoing recovery
• better understand how to improve the quality of life
of long-term claimants
• improve the efficiency, effectiveness and
appropriateness of services according to differing
sub-groups of claimants.
Methods
The study will undertake: 1) a systematic review of the
literature; 2) an exploratory analysis of data regarding
existing long-term claimants through the ACC database;
3) develop questions, and identify the sample characteristics; 4) prospectively track and interview a cohort of ACC
claimants for at least two years after their initial contact
with ACC.
Key findings
Preliminary findings from the first three steps will be
presented at the conference. The analysis of the data will
include an overview of the seriousness of accidents broken
down by accident type and cause; age; ethnicity; gender;
and return to work outcomes.
Discussion
ACC is in a unique position to undertake this research,
with all serious accidents nationwide captured on its
database. It should ultimately be possible to understand
the client experience of such accidents, and how we can
better meet their needs.
Conclusion
The presentation will provide an opportunity for the
researchers to engage the audience in a discussion on
the questions and methodology to inform a best practice
approach to the research.
Objectives
To identify motor accident insurance (MAI) scheme design
features, policies and processes which help support the
sustainability of family care roles after catastrophic injury.
Methods: Semi-structured interviews with 16 families of
adults with motor vehicle accident (MVA) acquired sTBI
and focus group discussions with 24 brain injury service
providers recruited from two Australian states: one
operating a privately underwritten fault-based injury
insurance scheme and the other, a government
administered no-fault injury insurance scheme.
Principle Findings
The sustainability of family care was supported by:
actively involving families as partners in care planning
and delivery; a flexible, individualised life-time care
funding model; a no-fault entitlement to income benefits
from the time of injury; explicit entitlements with clear
limits; accessible rehabilitation and lifestyle support
services; ongoing monitoring of support needs by
specialists therapists; and a centralised point of
contact for organising timely responses to changes
in care needs. Contestable entitlements; experiences
of financial hardship and carer strain prior to claims
settlement; inadequate future care settlements;
inaccessible services; and limited follow-up in the
years post settlement were identified as significant
barriers to sustaining family care roles under the
fault based scheme.
Discussion
These findings illustrate the challenges to sustaining
family care after catastrophic injury under a ‘fault-based’
injury insurance scheme, questioning the long term
cost efficacy of this model if family supports fail.
Conclusion
Further research investigating how to best support
the sustainability of family care under different
insurance contexts is required.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
CONCURRENT SESSION 2
Designing interventions to facilitate return to work
The effects of a health provider network on costs and
return to work in the compensable setting
Do pain management programs keep working for
compensable patients? A three year follow up
Presenter
Dr Tania Pizzari
La Trobe University, Victoria, Australia
Presenter
Background
Dr Anne Daly
Health and Disability Strategy Group, Victorian Work
Cover Authority and the Transport Accident Commission
Victoria, Australia
In 2008, Victorian Workcover Authority and the Transport
Accident Commission commenced a pilot program in
conjunction with suitably experienced pain management
service providers to deliver multidisciplinary pain
management programs (PMP) in an out-patient setting
to injured Victorians.
There is evidence that preferred provider networks
can contain the cost of health care services and reduce
the duration of lost work time and disability in
compensation claimants. A network of physiotherapists
was implemented by the Transport Accident Commission
(TAC) early 2008 and expanded to include Worksafe Victoria
later that year. Assessment of the program in 2011
demonstrated improved health benefits for clients of
network providers, compared with non-network
physiotherapists, however the costs relating
compensation clients was not known.
Objectives
Objectives
To determine whether attendance at a targeted ‘Network’
PMP has a beneficial and long term effect on the clinical
and occupational outcomes for injured workers. To
compare these outcomes with those of other PMPs.
To compare average and median worker’s compensation
claims costs and return to work rates between injured
clients managed by network physiotherapists and those
managed by non-network physiotherapists.
Method
Method
An observational study of 311 injured Victorian
workers who participated in a Network PMP and 417
injured Victorian workers who participated in other PMPs
between 2008 and 2011. Outcome measures were tracked
for up to 3 years including the Brief Pain Inventory (BPI),
Fear Avoidance Beliefs Questionnaire (FABQ), Global
Impression of Change, client satisfaction, medication
utilisation and scheme related costs.
A comparison was made between 105 network claims
and 1136 non-network claims. To ensure a comparison
of similar claims, the clients must have received
physiotherapy within 90 days of their injury, spent less
than 15 days in hospital following their injury and had not
returned to work at the time of their initial physiotherapy
appointment.
Background
Results
Principle Findings
Improvements (p < .001) were noted on the BPI pain
interference scale (mean 1.7, SD 2.5), the FABQ work scale
(mean 3.2, SD 7.7) and physical activity scale (mean 5.2,
SD 6.4). Medication usage reduced from 60% of injured
workers to 35%, for other PMPs, usage was relatively
unchanged. The average costs for injured workers who
participated in a ‘Network’ PMP were 33% lower than
those who participated in other PMPs. ‘Network’ PMPs
resulted in improved RTW outcomes for workers when
compared with other PMPs. 92.5% of clients reported
improvement on the Global Impression of Change and
94% were satisfied with their Network PMP. On average
1.9 years elapsed from injury to assessment for a
‘Network’ PMP.
Conclusion
Network’ PMPs provided important and sustained benefits
for injured Victorian workers. These benefits were superior
to those of other PMPs. Timely access remains a problem
and as one potential solution, Physiotherapists and
Psychologists can now refer compensable clients directly
to Network PMPs as well as Medical Practitioners.
The average and median medical and like cost for a
claim at 12 months for non-network claims was $5462
and $3568, whereas for network claims it was $4239 and
$2429. For income support spend average and median, the
non-network providers was $5124 and $1902 and network
providers was $2846 and $1389. The differences
were statistically significant for both variables. At 3
months post commencement of physiotherapy there
was a trend for network claims to have returned to work
when compared with non-network claims (p=0.06).
Conclusion
This network of physiotherapy providers has previously
been shown to generate greater health outcomes in
compensation clients. The current research highlights
that these outcomes are achieved at a reduced cost to the
compensation system with some evidence of better return
to work rates.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
17
Right Intervention at the right time: working with
complexity, mental health and disability in Victorian
compensation settings
Mental Health Claims Management and Return to Work:
Qualitative Insights from Melbourne, Australia
Presenter
Dr Bianca Brijnath
Monash University, Melbourne
Karen Sait
Transport Accident Commission, Victoria, Australia
Background
In Victorian compensation settings mental health issues
are categorised as primary mental injury (no physical
injury) e.g. PTSD; and secondary mental injury claims e.g.
anxiety, depression, pain related. A Mental Health Strategy
in response to increasing costs and poor client outcomes
was endorsed by both the Transport Accident Commission
(TAC) and Victorian Workcover Authority (VWA) Boards in
2011/12. It is informed by an expert advisory committee
and research by the Institute for Safety, Compensation
and Recovery Research (ISCRR). Phased implementation
is underway.
Presenter
Authors
Bianca Brijnath, Danielle Mazza, Nabita Singh, Agnieszka
Kosny, Rasa Ruseckaite and Alex Collie. Monash University,
Melbourne
Background
Mental health conditions (MHC) are an increasing reason
for claiming injury compensation in Australia; however
little is known about how these claims are managed by
different gatekeepers to injury entitlements. This study
aims to describe current management of MHC claims
and barriers to return to work (RTW) for injured persons
with a MHC claim and/or mental illness.
Objectives
Methods
To achieve better client outcomes - health, independence,
return to work, scheme viability. Methods: implementation
of new evidence based initiatives within TAC Claims:
Ninety-three in-depth interviews were undertaken with
four stakeholders; GPs, compensation agents, employers
and injured persons. Data were collected in Melbourne,
Australia. Thematic techniques were used to analyse data.
1. Model of ‘stepped’ care
2 Contemporary supports services and interventions:
I. E-therapy
II. Psychosocial outreach
III. Intensive outreach
Underpinned by:
1.Enhanced staff capability
2.Client research and information
3.Claims management decision making process
4.Innovative partnerships
Principle Findings
Benefits of early intervention(s) post claim.
• Client information and education crucial.
• Outreach and flexible approaches versus clinical
interventions only, lead to better outcomes.
• Leadership, culture change and staff capability
are cornerstones.
Results
MHC claims were complex to manage because of initial
assessment and diagnostic difficulties related to the
invisibility of the injury, conflicting medical opinions and
the stigma associated with making a MHC claim. Mental
illness also developed as a secondary issue in the recovery
process. These factors made MHC difficult to manage
and impeded timely RTW.
Conclusion
It is necessary to undertake further research (e.g.
guideline development) to improve current practice in
order to enable those with MHC claims to make a timely
RTW. Further education and training interventions (e.g.
on diagnosis and management of MHC) are also needed
to enable GPs, employers and compensation agents to
better assess and manage MHC claims.
Discussion
In compensation settings, mental injury claims are often
longer, more complex, costly and frequently lack resolution.
This presentation will highlight challenges and opportunities
for clients, claims staff, health and disability providers
in working in new ways; data analysis and significant
impacts; and learnings from this journey.
Conclusion(s)
• Improved health, independence, and return to work.
• Enhanced client experience(s) and options.
• Positive impact on scheme viability.
• Opportunities for VWA for their injured workers.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
CONCURRENT SESSION 3
Influence of psychosocial factors on recovery
outcomes
Conclusion
Acknowledging the impact of mental health on long term
recovery is important for identifying individuals at risk
of poor recovery, as is engaging with insurers and allied
health professionals to discuss findings and develop
appropriate screening tools and effective interventions
which optimize recovery.
The effect of mental health on long-term recovery
following a road traffic crash: Results from the UQ
SuPPORT study
Presenter
Psychosocial determinants of recovery in adults with
spinal cord injury
Erin Brown
The University of Queensland
Presenter
Authors
Prof. Ashley Craig
The University of Sydney, Australia
Justin Kenardy1, Michelle Heron-Delaney1, Jacelle
Warren1, Erin Brown1. 1) Centre of National Research
on Disability and Rehabilitation Medicine, School of
Medicine, The University of Queensland, Herston,
Queensland, Australia
Authors
Ashley Craig Rebecca Guest, Ian Cameron, and James
Middleton. Sydney Medical School, The University of
Sydney
Background
Background
Road traffic crashes (RTCs) can have a large and longlasting impact on individuals, in terms of both physical
and mental health outcomes.
Spinal cord injury (SCI) is a traumatic and debilitating
condition that has ongoing negative impacts on quality of
life and recovery can be very challenging. A major goal of
recovery following SCI is to optimize rates of participation
in society. This paper will present findings from research
that investigated factors that contribute to participation
and autonomy following discharge from rehabilitation.
Objectives
To assess the relationship between mental health and
long-term disability, health-related quality of life and
return to work outcomes in motorists who sustained
predominately minor injuries following a road traffic
crash across a 2-year period.
Objective
Method
To determine factors that contributed to recovery.
A prospective longitudinal design was used with
assessment via interview and questionnaire at 3-6 months
(Wave 1), 12 months (Wave 2), and 24 months (Wave 3)
post-injury. A total of 382 claimants (recruited through
the CTP scheme in Queensland) consented to participate.
Methods
Principle Findings
The majority of participants (64%) were classified as
minor injury cases (ISS = 1 – 3), however, participant’s
disability and health-related quality of life levels remained
below Australian norms over the course of the study.
Approximately 40% of participants were newly diagnosed
with a psychiatric disorder (i.e. had no history of mental
illness pre-RTC), with the incidence of PTSD at any wave
being 35%, major depressive episode being 48% and
generalized anxiety disorder being 41%. All three disorders
co-occurred in 10% of participants. Compared to those
without a psychiatric diagnosis, those with poor mental
health reported significantly higher disability, significantly
higher pain, significantly lower health-related quality
of life, more sick leave and time off work, higher use of
health care services and low expectations regarding
recovery. Early depressive symptoms in particular
(i.e. at 6 months) and low expectations to return to
work predicted a failure to return to work by 24
months post-RTC.
Participants included 90 adults with SCI, admitted over
two-years into three SCI Units. Longitudinal assessment
occurred up to six-months after discharge. Assessment
included socio-demographic and injury variables, and a
range of psychosocial and mental health measures.
The Impact on Participation and Autonomy Questionnaire
(IPAQ) was used as an indicator of recovery. The sample
was dichotomised into low versus high participation based
on IPAQ scores six months after discharge. Logistic
regression was used to determine factors measured
at discharge that predicted recovery six months
post-discharge.
Principle Findings
Depressive mood, severity of secondary conditions, a
robust self-efficacy and social support were found to be
significant predictors of recovery. These factors correctly
predicted over 70% of those who had poor participation
after six months of living in the community. Most injury
and demographic factors were poor predictors of recovery.
Discussion and Conclusions
SCI rehabilitation is designed to address risks such as
poor mood, feelings of helplessness, social isolation
and secondary conditions like infection. Clearly, however,
these factors continue to be barriers to long-term
recovery. Strategies for reducing the impact of these
barriers and for improving recovery will be discussed.
Application of these findings to improve recovery following
non-catastrophic injuries will also be discussed.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
19
The influence of pre-injury psychosocial factors on
vocational outcomes in New Zealand: A prospective
study of ACC entitlement claimants
Use of Antidepressants before and after road traffic
injury: insights from Data Linkage of Medicare and
Compensable Injury Claims in Victoria, Australia
Presenter
Presenter
Dr Rebbecca Lilley
University of Otago, Dunedin, New Zealand
Dr Janneke Berecki-Gisolf
Monash University, Melbourne, Australia
Authors
Authors
Rebbecca Lilley, Gabrielle Davie and Sarah Derrett. Injury
Prevention Research Unit, University of Otago, Dunedin,
New Zealand
Janneke Berecki-Gisolf1, Alex Collie2, Behrooz
Hassani-Mahmooei1 and Rod McClur3. 1) Monash
Injuries Research Institute, Monash University,
Melbourne, Australia. 2) Institute for Safety,
Compensation and Recovery Research, Monash
University, Melbourne, Australia. 3) Harvard Injury
Control Research Center, Harvard School of Population
Health, Boston, USA
Background
The Prospective Outcomes of Injury Study (POIS) is a
cohort study following the disability outcomes of injured
New Zealanders. Prolonged work absences result in
significant social and economic costs to individuals,
families and society.
Aims
This work-related component of POIS aims to determine
pre-injury psychosocial predictors of work absence for
2626 injured workers at 12 and 24 months.
Methods
A sample of 2626 workers aged 18-64 years, referred to
the national injury compensation scheme (ACC) for an
entitlement claim (i.e. injury severe enough to warrant one
week off work or home/transportation assistance) during
the period December 2007 to May 2009 were interviewed
at 12- and 24-month intervals post-injury. Separate
multi-variable models are developed for 12- and 24month outcomes.
Principle Findings
Multi-variable analysis of seven pre-injury psychosocial
measures found workers with high job strain, job insecurity;
low job satisfaction and a prior depressive episode
had higher likelihood of work absence in both 12and 24-month models. Multi-dimensional models
simultaneously considering socio-demographic, physical,
psychosocial, work organisational, health, lifestyle and
injury factors found only job satisfaction remained as an
important predictor of work absence at 12-months only.
Other important predictors at 12- and 24-months include
pre-injury income, co-morbidities, occupation, workrelatedness of the injury, employment contracts,
financial security and working hours.
Discussion / Conclusion
The influence of psychosocial factors, including prior
depressive episodes, upon work absence do not appear
as important in New Zealand’s universal ACC scheme as
found in studies in other countries. Our analysis indicates
predictors of work status after injury are multidimensional
and future interventions need to address a broad range
factors in order to give injured workers the best opportunity
to return back to the workforce. Funders: The Health
Research Council of New Zealand (2007-2013) and the
Accident Compensation Corporation (2007-2010).
20
Background
Psychological consequences of road traffic injury are
common; as is the use of antidepressant medication after
injury. Little is known about antidepressant use by injured
people prior to their injury. The aim of this study is to
describe the nature and extent of antidepressant use
before and after road traffic injury, and to determine the
extent to which post-injury antidepressant use can be
attributed to the incident injury.
Methods
Victorian residents who claimed Transport Accident
Commission (TAC) compensation for a non-catastrophic
injury that occurred between 2010- 2012 and provided
consent for Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme (PBS)
linkage were included (n=734). PBS records dating from
12 months prior to 12 months post injury were provided
by the Dept. of Human Services (Canberra). PBS and
TAC claims data were linked and de-identified.
Results
Among participants, 12% used antidepressants before
injury (84.4 Defined Daily Doses /1000 person-days) and 17
% used antidepressants after injury (114.1 DDD/1000p-d).
Pre-injury use was more common among women (109.4
vs. 54.6 DDD/1000p-d), persons ≥65 years (119.0 vs. 74.2),
and those with whiplash injury (119.3 vs. 73.1). 7% of
participants had new onset antidepressant use; this was
most common after hospital stay >1 day. Pre-injury,
escitalopram was most commonly prescribed;
amitriptyline was the most common post-injury
antidepressant.
Conclusions
The large majority of road traffic injury victims
using antidepressants after injury had been taking
antidepressants prior to the injury event. Pre-injury
antidepressant use was particularly prevalent amongst
those with whiplash injury. These results highlight the
importance of obtaining information on pre-injury health
status before interpreting post-injury health service
use to be an outcome of injury in question.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Key participants
OPENING
Mr Paul Shannon was appointed as Chairman of ISCRR in August 2013. Paul has led
the ISCRR Board in the development of ISCRR’s Strategy 2020. Mr Shannon was a partner
at KPMG in Melbourne for over 25 years, and has over 35 years’ experience in providing audit,
assurance and risk management services to Australian corporations in the Consumer and
Industrial market sector. During his time at KPMG, Mr Shannon was Head of the Industrial
Markets division incorporating the audit, tax and consulting practice and has been involved
in numerous assignments concerning due diligence of major corporate transactions
including those involving initial public offerings and acquisitions. He has also previously
been a member of the Australian Auditing and Assurance Standards Board and was appointed
by the Treasurer of Australia as the inaugural Chairman of the Financial Reporting Panel –
a Statutory Agency of the Australian government monitoring the financial reporting practices
of ASX listed companies.
PANEL CHAIRS SESSIONS 1 AND 2
Prof. Kath McPherson is Professor of Rehabilitation at AUT and Director of Person
Centred Research at Auckland University of Technology, New Zealand. Kath has a nursing
and psychology background and her research focuses on: informing rehabilitation by
psychological approaches; participation and return to work outcomes; quality of life; quality
of care; goal setting; promoting engagement in rehabilitation; understanding the experience
of disability and theory in rehabilitation. Kath uses both qualitative and quantitative approaches
as required and most appropriate. She was recently made a Fellow of the Australasian Faculty
of Rehabilitation Medicine (Honorary) and in addition to her substantive post, acts as a
consultant to ACC, is Visiting Professor to Kings College London and the University of
Southampton and is a member of the Work and Income Board, advising on social welfare
reform in New Zealand.
Ms Denise Cosgrove joined the Victorian WorkCover Authority (VWA) as Chief Executive
in November 2012. The VWA is responsible for preventing workplace injuries, supporting
injured workers and managing insurance and compensation for both workers and employers.
Denise has held senior management positions for the past 20 years in human resources
organisational development, operational management, strategy, planning and communications.
Prior to joining the VWA, Denise worked for New Zealand’s Accident Compensation
Corporation (ACC). Her most recent role with the ACC was as General Manager, Claims
Management, responsible for the management of ACC operations as well as other areas
including the clinical directorate, health procurement and innovation functions. Prior to
working with the ACC Denise was Assistant Auditor-General, Strategy at the Office of the
Auditor-General. Denise is a big proponent of challenging people by provoking innovation.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
21
PANEL MEMBERS SESSION ONE
Mr Hugh Norriss BA (Sociology), is the Director of Development and Policy at Mental
Health Foundation of NZ. Hugh is an experienced director, CEO and leader of public policy
development, health and social services delivery, and community and organisational
development in the public and not-for-profit sector. He has particular interest and expertise
in wellbeing and resilience research and practical application, at individual and population
levels. Hugh’s role as Director Development & Policy includes synthesising the wide range
of recent international research data on population and personal wellbeing, resilience and
positive mental health into accessible concepts and summaries. This knowledge is then
applied to policy position and advocacy documents, health promotion programmes,
workplace support initiatives, national advertising campaigns and research projects.
A career highlight has been establishing Working Well, a social business for the MHF.
This provides workplace wellbeing workshops and seminars. In leadership roles as CEO
of Welllink Trust for 8 years, and a Senior Manager at Capital and Coast District Health
Board for 3 years, Hugh has managed over 400 professional and administrative staff,
with budgets of up to 65 million dollars.
Prof. Ian Cameron is a clinician researcher who has the Chair in Rehabilitation
Medicine at the University of Sydney. He heads the recently renamed John Walsh Centre
for Rehabilitation Research.
PANEL MEMBERS SESSION TWO
Dr Kris Fernando is a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist by training. She has
worked in the areas of neuropsychology and liaison psychiatry, both with children and adults
at Auckland District Health Board specialising in traumatic brain injury and oncology. She
is currently a senior lecturer in neuropsychology and is working as the National Manager,
Psychology and Mental Health at the Accident Compensation Corporation in New Zealand
which provides no-fault injury cover. In this role, she manages at team of Branch Advisory
Psychologists (BAPs) who are located throughout New Zealand and provide advice to Case
Owners managing claims. The main areas in which Kris and the BAPs work in are traumatic
brain injury, pain management, psychological disorders following physical injury and sensitive
claims.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Mr Michael Francis is the General Manager of Scheme Improvement and
Regulation, WorkCover South Australia. MBA (Finance), GCertCorpMgt, BOccThy, BHMS.
Michael has a diverse cross-section of experience in accident compensation and personal
injury management. He has a deep understanding of the political, regulatory and business
imperatives of the sector. Michael is the General Manager of Scheme Improvement and
Regulation for WorkCover South Australia. He has executive level experience with the
regulator in Queensland, worked for self-insured employers and as a consultant Occupational
Therapist. He enjoys the challenge of identifying what drives real return to work and return
to life outcomes at a scheme design and strategic initiatives level.
Ms Janine Reid is Legal Counsel at WorkCover Queensland. She has worked in various
management roles in WorkCover Queensland since 2000. She is now Legal Counsel in the
executive management team. Prior to this role she was the regional manager responsible
for the teams managing claims and customers in the manufacturing and tourism industries.
She has also held roles involving management of damages claims, Government employer
claims and medical, allied health and legal providers.
PANEL MEMBERS FINAL SESSION
Mr Nick Rushworth is Executive Officer of Brain Injury Australia - the national peak
acquired brain injury (ABI) advocacy organisation representing the needs of people with an
ABI, their families and carers. He was also President of the Brain Injury Association of New
South Wales between 2004 and 2008. In 1996, armed with a bicycle, Nick attacked two cars.
The cars won, but Nick’s recovery from a severe traumatic brain injury was exceptional.
Before joining Brain Injury Australia, Nick worked for the Northern Territory Government
setting up their new “Office of Disability”. Formerly a producer with the Nine Television
Network’s “Sunday” program and ABC Radio National, Nick’s journalism has won a number
of awards, including a Silver World Medal at the New York Festival, a National Press Club
and TV Week Logie Award.
Prof. Malcolm Hopwood is the Ramsay Health Care Professor of Psychiatry,
University of Melbourne; based at the Albert Road Clinic in Melbourne Australia. His
specialises in clinical aspects of mood and anxiety disorders, psychopharmacology
and psychiatric aspects of acquired brain injury. In the past, he led the Psychological
Trauma Recovery Service, incorporating the Veterans Psychiatry Unit and the Victorian
Brain Disorders Program, Austin Health. He has held senior positions within the Royal
Australian and New Zealand College of Psychiatrists including past Chairmanships of
the Victorian Branch and the Board of Research, and is currently the President Elect
of the College.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
23
Mr Kurutia Seymour has worked for ACC for 24 years, beginning in the claims and
compensation side of the business, moving to projects, before working in the levy and
collection, government services and strategic Programme functions. He has held senior
roles within ACC since 2009, including Board and Corporate Secretary and General Manager
Governance, Policy and Research. Currently Kurutia is assisting ACC develop a set of strategies
for the Corporation to ensure vulnerable populations (Maori, Pacific, Asian, Peoples with
disabilities, children and the elderly) receive appropriate service responses in light of their
unique needs.
Dr Anne Daly has over 20 years’ experience as a musculoskeletal physiotherapist.
For most of those years she has had an interest in persistent (chronic) pain. The measurement
of clinical outcomes is also a key interest. Anne works as a physiotherapy and pain
management consultant to the Health and Disability Strategy Group at the Victorian
WorkCover Authority and the Transport Accident Commission and is currently involved
with the Network Pain Program and the Persistent Pain strategy. Anne is also a senior
clinician within the Austin Health Pain Service, where she continues to see complex
patients with persistent pain.
CONCURRENT SESSION ONE
Chair: Ms Cathy Pilecki is Manager – Policy and Research at Motor Accident
Insurance Commission. Although starting her working life as a health professional,
Cathy has, over her ten year tenure at MAIC, developed a strong understanding of the
legislative framework that underpins the scheme as well as the current policy issues
and imperatives impacting the scheme. Cathy’s ongoing involvement in MAIC’s research
funding program provides her with useful perspectives on how research and policy
interconnect to drive improved outcomes for motorists and injured parties.
Prof. Jennie Ponsford is a Professor of Neuropsychology in the School of Psychological
Sciences at Monash University and Director of the Monash-Epworth Rehabilitation Research
Centre at Epworth Hospital in Melbourne, Australia. She has spent the past 34 years engaged
in clinical work and research with individuals with brain injury. Her research has investigated
outcomes following mild, moderate and severe traumatic brain injury (TBI), factors predicting
outcome, including and the efficacy of rehabilitative interventions to improve outcome, with
current intervention studies focusing specifically on fatigue and sleep changes, and psychiatric
and substance use following TBI. She has published over 180 journal articles and book
chapters on these subjects, as well as two books on rehabilitation following traumatic brain
injury. She also directs a doctoral training program in Clinical Neuropsychology at Monash
University and her students are actively engaged with her research program. Professor
Ponsford is the Immediate Past-President of the International Neuropsychological Society,
Past-President of the International Association for the Study of Traumatic Brain Injury and
the Australian Society for the Study of Brain Impairment (ASSBI), and serves on the
Executive of the International Brain Injury Association and ASSBI. She is a member of the
Editorial Board of seven international journals. In May, 2013 she was awarded the Robert L.
Moody prize for Distinguished Initiatives in Brain Injury and Rehabilitation.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
Ms Fiona Cromarty has had a long career with the Transport Accident Commission
(TAC) in the state of Victoria including heading the Independence Branch that manages
the most severely injured client cohort. Fiona has led a range of major strategic programs
including the development and implementation of the Independence model that dramatically
changed the way the TAC works with seriously injured transport accident victims and a
program of work focussing on improving the TAC’s self-directed (individualised) funding
model. She is currently the Senior Manager of Partnerships at the TAC with a focus on
working with external partners to improve the outcomes of those living with profound,
acquired disabilities.
Ms Sally Faisandier started her career as a teacher, and then she worked as a
counsellor and researcher in disabilities, mental health and addictions, before moving
to Wellington where she has spent the last 15 years working as a researcher in the
public sector. While at the Ministry of Justice, she oversaw the overhaul of NZ’s national
victimisation survey, which produced eight reports. Sally started at ACC in August
2013, where she oversees a portfolio of Rehabilitation research projects. Her qualifications
are in Psychology, Evaluation and Teaching.
Dr Rosamund Harrington is a Senior Research Fellow at the Centre for National
Research on Disability and Rehabilitation (CONROD), School of Human Services and Social Work,
Griffith University. Ros has a long track record working as an occupational therapist in brain injury
rehabilitation and mental health services. She is a founding member and current convenor of the
Quarterly Brain Injury Services Meeting (QBISM) group which brings together brain injury service
providers from across public, private and NGO sector services in south-east Queensland. Ros
was recently awarded a 2013 Deans Commendation for Research Higher Degree Excellence for
her PhD thesis Motor Accident Insurance Scheme Design and Pathways after Severe Traumatic Brain
Injury which compared experiences of people with severe traumatic brain injury, their families
and service providers under a fault-based and a no-fault motor accident insurance scheme.
This research was supervised by Associate Professors Michele Foster and Jennifer Fleming
of the University of Queensland.
CONCURRENT SESSION TWO
Chair: Ms Darnel Murgatroyd is currently working as the Senior Advisor for Injury
Research and Grants at the Motor Accidents Authority of NSW and is a PhD candidate at the
John Walsh Centre for Rehabilitation Research at the University of Sydney. Having qualified
as a physiotherapist in New Zealand in 1992, she has worked in public and private health
systems in New Zealand, Australia and the UK. She has also been employed in a variety of
other roles in the insurance industry and at the Motor Accidents Authority over past decade.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
25
Dr Anne Daly has over 20 years’ experience as a musculoskeletal physiotherapist.
For most of those years she has had an interest in persistent (chronic) pain. The measurement
of clinical outcomes is also a key interest. Anne works as a physiotherapy and pain
management consultant to the Health and Disability Strategy Group at the Victorian
WorkCover Authority and the Transport Accident Commission and is currently involved
with the Network Pain Program and the Persistent Pain strategy. Anne is also a senior
clinician within the Austin Health Pain Service, where she continues to see complex
patients with persistent pain.
Dr Tania Pizzari is a lecturer and researcher in the Department of Physiotherapy
at La Trobe University and adjunct research fellow for the Australian Centre for Research
into Injury in Sport and its Prevention. She works part-time in her own private practice as
a physiotherapist and has worked on the Victorian Workcover Association Clinical Panel
since 2005. She graduated from La Trobe University with her PhD in 2002 and continues
to conduct research into a number of areas of musculoskeletal and sports medicine.
Ms Karen Sait Manager Stakeholder Partnerships, Health and Disability Strategy
Group (HDSG) – a shared service of the Transport Accident Commission (TAC) and the
Victorian Workcover Authority (VWA). In her current role Karen leads the development
of relationships and partnerships in health and disability to inform new strategies and
initiatives for both schemes. Previous roles with HDSG include developing and implementing
mental health and disability initiatives, and integrating neurotrauma research into ISCRR.
Karen has extensive experience in service development and leadership in health and the
community sector. She was a recipient of a travel grant from the Victorian Government to
learn from innovative mental health services in Canada and the USA. This experience
informed the development of new services in inner Melbourne, two receiving national awards
for innovation and excellence. In addition from 2004 – 2008, Karen was the elected local
government representative (councillor) for the City of Port Phillip – a progressive inner
city Melbourne council.
Dr Bianca Brijnath is a NHMRC Postdoctoral Fellow and Senior Research Fellow in the
Department of General Practice, Monash University. Her previous studies include research in
mental health and compensable injuries with a specific focus on the role of GPs in facilitating
return to work. She is currently a chief investigator on the evaluation of the Health benefits of
safe work program, which is funded by the Victorian WorkCover Authority and the Transport
Accident Commission.
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4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
CONCURRENT SESSION THREE
Chair: Dr Kris Fernando is a clinical psychologist and neuropsychologist by training.
She has worked in the areas of neuropsychology and liaison psychiatry, both with children
and adults at Auckland District Health Board specialising in traumatic brain injury and
oncology. She is currently a senior lecturer in neuropsychology and is working as the National
Manager, Psychology and Mental Health at the Accident Compensation Corporation in New
Zealand which provides no-fault injury cover. In this role, she manages at team of Branch
Advisory Psychologists (BAPs) who are located throughout New Zealand and provide advice
to Case Owners managing claims. The main areas in which Kris and the BAPs work in are
traumatic brain injury, pain management, psychological disorders following physical injury
and sensitive claims.
Ms Erin Brown is a PhD candidate, investigating the impact of parental distress
on child’s recovery from a burns injury. She first joined Professor Justin Kenardy’s Social
and Behavioural Science team at CONROD in 2012, as a research assistant. Erin graduated
B.PsySc with first class Honours. She is very involved with the UQ SuPPORT research
project, investigating psychiatric comorbidity following a minor road traffic crash under
the Queensland CTP program. Other research interests include how mental health and
mother-child relationships are affected from experience in the Neonatal Intensive Care
Unit, and long-term consequences of TBI in children.
Prof. Ashley Craig PhD, holds the position of Professor of Rehabilitation Studies
in the John Walsh Centre for Rehabilitation Research in the Kolling Institute of Medical
Research, The University of Sydney. He has published over 200 refereed papers, books, book
chapters and refereed conference papers. Over the past 15 years he has won around $10
million in competitive funding mostly from sources such the ARC, as well as from the Motor
Accident Authority, NHMRC, Lifetime Care and Support Authority, Rotary Health, and the
NSW State Government. His research involves psychosocial aspects of recovery following
catastrophic and non-catastrophic injury associated with road accidents. He also investigates
neuropsychophysiological aspects of injury. Professor Craig is a senior clinical psychologist
working with conditions such as SCI, TBI, and problems like PTSD, MDD and chronic pain.
Dr Rebbecca Lilley has worked as a researcher in the Department of Preventive and
Social Medicine since 1999, obtaining a PhD from the University of Otago in 2007. Dr Lilley’s
research specialises in using epidemiological methods to understand occupational injury
and subsequent work-disability following injury in New Zealand workers. Her current work
focuses on identifying modifiable factors for addressing work disability following injury and
improving the quality of work-related fatal injury data for surveillance purposes. Dr Lilley
has been lead, and collaborated, on a number of Health Research Council and Ministry of
Business, Innovation, and Employment funded projects and programmes. Dr Lilley has also
held training fellowships in occupational injury prevention from the Health Research Council
and work disability prevention from the Canadian Institutes of Health Research.
Dr Janneke Berecki-Gisolf is a Senior Research Fellow at the Monash Injury
Research Institute, in the Injury Outcomes Research Unit. She is the lead investigator of the
Outcomes of Compensated Injury in Victoria study, which is designed to provide insight into
the impact of pre-existing health conditions on recovery after workplace and road transport
injuries. The study involves linkage of injury compensation claim records with Medicare and
Pharmaceutical Benefits Scheme records. The Transport Accident Commission and the
Victorian Workcover Authority have funded the study through ISCRR, the Institute for
Safety, Compensation and Recovery Research.
4TH AUSTRALASIAN COMPENSATION HEALTH RESEARCH FORUM
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