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21.2 Date of Disease


Establishing a date of onset of a disease is critical to the determination of liability as the criteria for acceptance varies according to the Act in force at the time.

It is often not possible to establish a precise date of injury in respect of the onset of a disease or the aggravation of a disease. Often, the date of diagnosis of the disease will be considerably later than the date of first manifestation of symptoms or the date of first medical examination in respect of the condition.

Section 7(4) of the SRCA deems a date for the purposes of the Act:

7(4) For the purposes of this Act, an employee shall be taken to have sustained an injury, being a disease, or an aggravation of a disease, on the day when:

a)the employee first sought medical treatment for the disease, or aggravation, or

b)the disease or aggravation resulted in the death of the employee or first resulted in the incapacity for work, or impairment of the employee,

whichever happens first.

Accordingly, the Delegate must investigate:

  • first date of medical treatment
  • first date of incapacity for work
  • date of death (where applicable)
  • date of impairment.