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Auditor General's Report Verifies Concerns Press Release: Acclaim

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Posted 30 April 2004 - 01:29 PM

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Auditor General's Report verifies concerns

Friday, 30 April 2004, 1:11 pm
Press Release: Acclaim

Press Release

ACCLAIM Support Groups

Auditor General's Report verifies claimant's concerns.


ACC's claims management was not given a clean bill of health by the Auditor General's report released yesterday as purported by ACC in their press release. In fact the report validated what claimants, their advocates and lawyers have been saying for several years.

The report echoes claimant's long held concerns regarding Individual Rehabilitation Plans. These are often seen as a token effort to comply with the legislative requirements. The report says:

"Other case managers prepare an IRP, and then send a letter that outlines the content of the plan and asks the claimant to sign a final decision letter"

"We also found instances where the content appeared to have been copied, with little to differentiate them in detail from other plans."

"It was also sometimes offered on a 'take it or leave it' basis, along with the reference to statutory consequences of non-compliance with ACC directions."

The report recommends that - "ACC ensure that all case managers tailor the content of each individual rehabilitation plan to the claimant's rehabilitation needs." It also recommended that- "ACC case managers make sure that the claimant fully understands their goals, rights, and responsibilities before the claimant is asked to sign the Individual Rehabilitation Plan."

The Auditor General's report also says that the lessons from Catalyst need to be heeded and "have relevance to ACC's future dealings with long term claimants." Catalyst had business goals "to return 2000 long term claimants to independence during the 2002-2003 financial year." The expectation of vocational independence being achieved with a time frame of 12-15 months and the "pressure on case managers to have a set number of claimants leave the scheme may have affected the level of service they could provide to each claimant." Advocacy groups say this relates directly to the 'exit of the tail' initially brought to the public's attention by the media in 2002.

"We find it very coincidental that this report was due out in Oct 2003 and Catalyst was disbanded in Sept 2003." said ACCLAIM spokesperson Murray Jorgensen.

Many claimants speak of their frustration when after winning a review decision or District Court appeal ACC seems to drag the chain before reinstating entitlements. The Auditor General shared the "Ombudsmen's concern about any delay, because this can have severe consequences for the claimant, and cause significant disruption to their life." Therefore a further recommendation was that "ACC prioritise action to implement a reviewer's decision as quickly as possible in cases where ACC decisions are overturned and it elects not to appeal."

ACCLAIM support groups are welcoming ACC's CEO Garry Wilson's assurance that "Most of the Auditor-General's suggestions for improvement are being addressed. The report will be circulated to all ACC branch staff so they can take on board its recommendations." Support groups and advocates only hope this is not just lip service and ACC will actually address the issues outlined.

"ACC is not applying the principles of natural justice and complying with the NZ Bill of Rights Act when making decisions which is a fundamental issue of fairness that the Auditor General has missed in the report. Support groups remain of the view that a public select-committee inquiry is needed so that all people have an opportunity of making submissions and for the select-committee to examine the Auditor General's report in that context." Mr Jorgensen stated.

http://www.scoop.co....0404/S00216.htm
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#2 User is offline   BillyBob 

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Posted 30 April 2004 - 08:03 PM

Claimant Satisfaction Surveys (paragraphs 6.48-6.62 on pages 98-101)
ACC commissions and widely promotes the results of seven claimant satisfaction surveys. We reviewed the quarterly Network Management Survey because of its focus on claimant satisfaction with branch performance, and to provide assurance that the results were based on sound methodology. In our view, the methodology was sound and the surveys produce reliable information on which to base statements in ACC’s accountability publications. ACC’s Annual Report for 2002-03 describes claimant satisfaction rates for both short-term and long-term claimants. However, the report does not show the difference between them on the corresponding graph, instead showing only short-term claimant satisfaction. In our view, both short-term and long-term claimant satisfaction data should be presented in a consistent manner when using a graph or text

We recommend that – 16. ACC report both short-term and long-term claimant satisfaction rates in a consistent manner in its accountability publications. In our review of the surveys we also found a number of minor discrepancies between the survey findings and the information shown in ACC’s Annual Report for 2001-02. We recommend that – 17. ACC implement a process to ensure that claimant satisfaction survey results are accurately reported in published material


DOES THIS MEAN ACC ARE COOKING THE BOOKS

cheers
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#3 User is offline   flowers 

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Posted 30 April 2004 - 08:36 PM

Of course it does they are saying that but not saying it.
An excersise in political correctness.
We know this as I and many of have been saying for a long time.
How many of the so called 10 lonely dissidents have been requested to input responses to these fabrications and as I have said from the start, if they did one on long term claiments the figures would be totally different.
ACC knows this and that's why we are never asked for our input.
I know on several occasions in the early days I recieved letters from ACC stating that a certain survey company would be in touch.
This never happened so It raises the question, was the survey answered by someone else, or did ACC realise they had erred and told the surveyers not to follow through?????
The objective of all ACC surveys is ACC's interests and the surveys will be constructed to accent those things that are positive, any first year sociology 101 student will tell you that and have studied examples of how this is done and the ethics of the methods used.
A survey is only as good as its objectives so what does that tell us about ACC instigated surveys???????
If the thing was up front the government would run a survey with no input from ACC and send it to All recipients of ACC services in a given year and have it broken down into sub catagories like they do the statistics reports. Not ALL LUMped together, as the majority short term recipients figures would and currently do, over whelm any minority groupings responses.
This is cooking the books. And FRAUD.
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#4 User is offline   fairgo 

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Posted 30 April 2004 - 09:44 PM

They mentioned Hastings and New Plymouth claimant support groups..... who are these?????????????????????????????
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#5 User is offline   fairgo 

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Posted 30 April 2004 - 09:59 PM

So are there any people on this forum from those groups? and if so can they tell us if they, or anyone they know were contacted about this report. It would be very interesting to know just how many claimants were interviewed as without telling us that the stats and conclusions are irrelevant ;)
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#6 User is offline   jocko 

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 08:19 AM

"Given this range of views,it is not possible for us to arrive at an opinion on a
majority claimant perspective of ACC." end quote. This statement makes his whole report a waste of time. Who is the person that drew it up? How much input did ACC have? It is full of inuendo and supposition and sounds like it was Ruth Dysons Ministerial writing team ......

"Many people,both inside and outside ACC,told us that the organisation is
performing better now than in the past.In particular,employers,health service
providers,and some claimants commented that a positive change has occurred
over the last few years in that ACC is now actively addressing rehabilitation." end quote." " Many people?" What a profound piece of research. How long did it take to write this thing and who were involved? Some claimants? Many people? and this........"
ACC branches manage the claims that are likely to be costly and complex.These
are also the claims where those affected have a great deal at stake,and where
there is the greatest risk of something going wrong.We looked at the way that
ACC undertakes case management at the branches.We did not look at the
outcomes (the end point of individual case histories)provided by that case
management" end quote. Well what the hell was the point of having the enquiry in to case mangement??? What were the terms of reference? Who made them?


Well in a way I am grateful for that last statement. Now we have every right to demand an enquiry in to the outcomes provided by that case management.
Because we all know here that the outcome of this "Apropriate" case management has been the exit programme. Whereby thousands of innocent disabled people have been embezzled of their entitlements to Home help, Aids to daily living, Surgical operations, Travel for treatment etc. Independence Allowances have been slashed and policy holders have had water poured down their noses in an insane bid to cut their ERC at whatever cost. And that cost is ballooning to the extent where ACC is spending more on "Rehabilitation" to it's host army of parasites than it is on compensation. ACC is double dipping by claiming for the long term claimants on the Compensation account and then to feed this army it is claiming again on the Rehabilitation account. This is where the fraud is committed. The Corporation uses these funds from the Rehabilitation account to provide a vehicle to EXIT the claimant from the scheme and escape it's legal long term liabilities.
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Posted 01 May 2004 - 09:22 AM

The DomPost Friday April 30th 2004
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#8 User is offline   BillyBob 

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 11:48 AM

Hi Fairgo

I believe the person who runs the New Plymouth support group is also on the COGS panel.
This is probably how they got involved.
Broken may be able to clarify this.

cheers
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#9 User is offline   flowers 

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Posted 01 May 2004 - 12:27 PM

Friday, April 30, 2004
Auditing the ACC Audit report

The Office of the Auditor General has released a report on the ACC The report is intended to provide an insight into the work of the ACC, with particular regard to case management and rehabilitation. Although ACC got a pass rate from the auditor-generals office, it is important to note why.

The report accentuates the good and eliminates the bad. The report says that the Office had seen no evidence that ACC selects medical providers and assessors who make decisions that
are biased towards ACC. That is because the auditors refused to see that information for the report - even though it was offered to them - and the auditors did not want to deal with individual cases.

ACC has a review process administered by ACC -owned Disputes Resolution Services based on natural justice. Before a case goes to review it has an administration review. Yet the Auditor General didn’t comment on the lack of natural justice in the review process.

Claimant satisfaction surveys were also looked into. ACC conducts several periodic surveys and the report picks out one - the network management survey. This excludes long-term claimants managed by ACC subsidiary Catalyst (until September 2003 when Catalyst was no more). Could that be because the network management survey would provide one of the most favourable results to ACC? The report would never extensively highlight the survey of claimants administered by Catalyst, as that survey noted 75 percent of Catalyst claimants were not advised of their entitlements or assistance, and nearly half the claimants were either dissatisfied or very dissatisfied with the service provided by Catalyst case managers. Nor did the report state now many Catalyst claims went to review or Appeal.

However, the report did note that ACC was not particularly honest in the way they communicated staff survey results in the annual reports. In fact communication was pretty poor all round both between internal teams and external claimants., despite a code of claimants rights being in force for a year or so.

Individual Rehabilitation plans(IRP's) were also under the spotlight and were found to be insufficient as many were not tailored to claimants' needs, nor done on time. This was not checked as monthly file reviews were not done by team managers. However, the report noted that these plans could be reviewed - but failed to mention that the reviewer , under law, does not have jurisdiction to overturn any dodgy IRP's.

The report failed to mention a lot of the unsatisfactory work of ACC subsidary Catalyst, who dealt with long term claimants. Instead, it said that "past ACC practices" were to blame for long term claimants who were not currently receiving deserved entitlements under the ACC Act. That's a bit like blaming former staff members for cockups that your work mates are currently making. Come to think of it, that is exactly what it is.

But one thing ACC was lacking in was quality communication - both internal and external. Perhaps the way staff treat claimants is a reflection of how they treat their fellow staff members, hence the recent reports on staff bullying.

The report said nothing that these guys didn't already know, and you can bet your bottom dollar that this audit report will not be the end of the matter. They`ll be calling for an inquiry into the ACC in light of what they will call an inadequate "whitewash" by an Audit Office doing its best to provide a report designed to put the ACC in the best light possible in order to please the Government.


# posted by Dave @ 10:51 PM
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http://big-news.blogspot.com/2004_04_01_bi...332232480206441
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#10 User is offline   ernie 

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Posted 05 May 2004 - 02:20 PM

I think one of the more significant features of the Auditor-General's report is that it hasn't considered the statutory obligation placed on the Corporation by section 70(a) of the 2001 Act. Under that section, "A claimant who has suffered personal injury for which he or she has cover -- is entitled to be provided by the Corporation with rehabilitation, to the extent provided by this Act, to assist in restoring the claimant's health, independence, and participation to the maximum extent practicable".

The way I read it, this means that someone who has been injured and is assessed as being unable to return to a reasonably paying pre-injury job because of his or her injury should, if practicable, be rehabilitated to enable him or her to gain a job with similar pay to that he or she was receiving pre-injury. After all, a person's participation in society is, to a large extent, dependent on his or her earning ability. If this means the provision of extensive training or education (within the 3 year limit on vocational rehabilitation prescribed by section 87(2) of the Act) required for the person to gain the necessary skills to return to his or her pre-injury income, then the rehab plan should include that training or education.

What ACC often do, however, is rehabilitate someone only to the extent necessary for them to undertake a menial and low-paid job such as carpark attendant, and then put them through the VIAP process to exit them. While the Auditor-General is critical of the rehabilitation plans, the issue of issue ACC's noncompliance with section 70(a) doesn't seem to be addressed.

With VIAP itself, the Auditor-General found that, despite claimant criticism, there was nothing wrong with ACC's administration of it. A major part of the problem with VIAP, as I see it, is not with the administration but with the legislation itself, and commenting on this wasn't within the Auditor-General's terms of reference.

However, without defending VIAP, I think the problem with a lot of VIAP exits is not the VIAP process, but the fact that ACC has not provided rehabilitation in accordance with section 70(a) of the Act before the VIAP process was begun. I'd be pissed off too, regardless of whether the VIAP process was itself fair, if I were told my weekly compensation would stop because I could do a job that pays only half what I was earning before my injury.
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#11 User is offline   BLURB 

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Posted 22 August 2008 - 11:29 AM

For the record

AON NZ LTD, being a "Third Party" service provider contractor to ACC fell outside of the Auditor Generals Jurisdiction so was never Audited in any way what so-ever

Between 1999 and July 2002, AON exited record numbers of Long Term Claimants (Tail enders - stock) and were paid Millions of NZ ACC Levy Payers money

Most of these ex Claimants then found themselves being supported by WINZ either on a Sickness and or an Invalids Benefit

This explains why the ACC have Billions of NZ ACC Levy Payers Money invested off shore and since 2002, the numbers on a Sickness or Invalids Benefits has increased!

The Auditors report also failed to disclose the huge part Enviromedix had in the exiting of long term claimants on behalf of the ACC, Catalyst and AON

This provider also disappeared at around the time Catalyst went to ground

This loop hole still exists and will again be exploited, more than what it has been since Catalyst disappeared = "Third Party" service provider contractors to ACC fall outside the Auditor Generals Jurisdiction

The Minister for ACC at the time, RUTH DYSON, was made aware of this and provided with the evidence, as too was Dr Paul Hutchison (Nationals ACC spokeperson) but both chose to ignore the issue

I wonder why?

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