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5.6.3. Age of medical evidence

Last amended 
4 June 2018

Ultimately, the currency of a piece of medical evidence is entirely dependent on context. There is no set policy rule about how current a piece of evidence must be in order to be utilised for assessment purposes. Instead, the delegate must use their discretion, and, where necessary, liaise with the client and medical professionals to determine whether a piece of medical evidence is appropriate for the case.

First and foremost, where these is a question around the currency of the evidence, as delegates we should be consulting with the clients around whether the client themselves is happy for the evidence in question to be used. A piece of evidence that is many years old may still form a picture of the client’s impairment that the client accepts.

An important question to ask in these cases is the following: Does the evidence in question allow you to be reasonably satisfied that the legislative and policy criteria have been met and that the evidence is appropriate for the client at this point in time?

Another rule of thumb: if there is a PI determination that a condition is permanent and stable at a particular level, and there is no other requirement to reassess the condition (ie for GARP apportionment purposes), the evidence is probably indefinitely useable.

Similarly, if the indication is that the report was only valid at a specific point in time, the evidence is potentially not useable.