A most welcome and far-sighted scheme is about to be rolled-out by Victoria’s Transport Accident Commission (TAC).
A new software program designed to provide speedy processing of accounts will be adopted by the TAC. Initially applying to GP’s, physiotherapists and pharmacists, the software program will be installed on the health professional’s computer system so that when a TAC claimant has been treated, an account can be sent directly to a central processor for assessment and payment. It is envisaged by the TAC that payments should be processed overnight.
This is certain to be of great help to the injured. Over the last 30 years of the scheme, surgeons, specialists and many health professionals have increasingly said they want nothing to do with the TAC and refused treatment of TAC claimants. They have expressed annoyance at the “red tape” and extensive delays preventing appropriate and expeditious payment. The injured have had to shop around, in many cases, to find a practitioner who would assist with their rehabilitation. Not only did this restrict the choice for the injured, it also meant the vitally important rehabilitation was either delayed or not started at all.
Once the process is up and running, the claimant will only have to provide their claim number to the clinic who will enter it in the “Red Lantern” system together with the details of service and fee. This will be recognised by the system and if the claim number is valid, the provider registered and the service within the anticipated treatment parameters, the payment will be approved.
The TAC will have contained within the system an analysis of the category into which the claimant is considered, which will remove the need for a person to approve the payment, save for exceptional circumstances or unusual entries.
It is anticipated that the system will be able to be used by other providers of services in the coming years. It is a huge step forward for the injured and will make the TAC scheme a leader in social insurance.