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6.5.4 Reserves claimants
The situation for Reserves claimants injured on training nights or annual camps is quite different to that of a full time serving ADF claimant. On some occasions a Regimental Aid Post might provide first aid or emergency treatment. Injured Reservists parading out of reach of an ADF Regimental Aid Post are commonly referred to a public hospital for emergency treatment only.
It should however be noted that Reservists will receive health care (usually through Defence Health Services) for injuries or illness resulting from their Defence service until such times as the transfer of the claimant into the RCG scheme is complete. That is until a decision is made by RCG including the reconsideration process. Details of these processes are contained in DI(G) PERS 16-1, amendment 4 dated 8 May 2002.
Thus, Defence medical files for Reservists may contain medical information, contemporary with and relevant to the injury and claim for compensation.
For these reasons, it may appear that Reservists are on the same footing as a civilian Commonwealth employee and that they are therefore subject to S54(3). However, it is not appropriate for Delegates to exclude a case under S54(3) in the first instance. Reserves claimants should instead be briefed on their responsibility to provide medical evidence to support their claim. They should be told verbally and in writing that, while RCG may receive and acknowledge the claim, we are unable to start processing or to finalise that claim until we have a diagnosis from a treating doctor.
A request for a Reservists ADF medical records is also to be made through SAM.