Sections 290(2) and 291(2) of MRCA provide compensation for journey and accommodation costs reasonably incurred by an attendant who is approved by a delegate to accompany a client to obtain compensable treatment. Approval must be given in advance of the travel being undertaken.
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The medical or other information provided in any rehabilitation assessment may help substantiate the need for attendant care services. Such an assessment might also provide important information about what other assistance may be provided to address a client’s needs and facilitate independence.
This could, for example, includes aids and appliances that could assist a person to manage tasks more independently. The provision of aids and appliances may have an impact on the level of attendant care services that the person may require in the future.
An important consideration with provision of attendant care services is the extent to which such services will assist the client to live in his/her own accommodation rather than in an institutional environment (such as residential care or a hospital based setting).
The goal of providing attendant care services and support is encourage the client to live as independent a life as possible within their capabilities.
Where clients have complex injuries, or can be regarded as having high needs, the Community Nursing Program must be involved in assessing the client’s nursing and attendant care needs.
Delegates should be satisfied that the client’s service related injury or illness creates the need for essential and regular personal care. Medical evidence or evidence from another suitably qualified medical or allied health professional or rehabilitation provider should be obtained to inform decision making.
A claim for attendant care services should be considered carefully in regard to what is reasonable for the client to receive. In determining whether attendant care services are reasonably required the delegate must consider the matters outlined in section 218 of MRCA and subsection 29(4) of SRCA the nature of the client’s injury or disease:
Definition of attendant care services
Attendant care services are provided to assist a person to manage their essential and regular personal care needs.
Generally attendant care services are provided to assist people with activities such as grooming, bathing, feeding, dressing, toileting and other personal or hygiene needs.
Attendant care services may enable a person to undertake or continue employment by providing targeted assistance, particularly to get ready for work at the beginning of the day. These services can be a key support in assisting a person to live as full a life as possible after a service related injury or illness, particularly where a person is managing the impact of severe disabilities.