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20.1.7 Injury from post-discharge medical treatment for a compensable condition


Section 6A was inserted into the SRCA to take account of the Military situation i.e. the requirement that a serving member be treated only by the ADF Health Service.

However, post-discharge medical treatment of a condition – i.e. where this treatment is compensable under S16 of the SRCA – represents another instance of treatment 'paid for by the Commonwealth'.

This is also the case where reservists are injured during their part-time service. The ADF pays only treatment until a claim with RCG is resolved. The case of a serving reservist therefore resembles that of a discharged full-time member.

When this treatment causes further complications, any resulting impairment or incapacity for work is also compensable as a direct result of the original injury, i.e. provided only that it was reasonable for the client to have obtained the medical treatment.

However, S6A is not relevant to such cases, as they are directly covered by S4(3) and S6(1)(b)(viii) of the SRCA. Section 4(3) states:

4(3) For the purposes of this Act, any physical or mental injury or ailment suffered by an employee as a result of medical treatment of an injury shall be taken to be an injury if, but only if:

a)compensation is payable under this Act in respect of the injury for which the medical treatment was obtained, and

b)it was reasonable for the employee to have obtained that medical treatment in the circumstances.