• Posted on: 25/02/2022
  • 1 minute to read
  • Tagged with: Network Women's ACC State Sector

The Accident Compensation (Maternal Birth Injury and Other Matters) Amendment Bill amends the Accident Compensation Act 2001 and has two main objectives:

  • to provide more equitable coverage for injuries covered by the Accident Compensation Scheme, and
  • to provide greater clarity for claimants, and to better give effect to the policy intent of the Accident Compensation Act 2001.

It will extend cover to a specified list of maternal birth injuries, that have the same characteristics as injuries that are already covered, and are incurred on or after 1 October 2022 (commencement date).

The Bill will also make 5 additional policy changes to the AC Act and 7 technical changes.

PSA’s recommendations

PSA supports the extension of ACC coverage for a range of maternal birth injuries.  However, we believe there are further improvements that could be made as part of this Amendment Bill to provide wider and more equitable outcomes for our communities.

We recommend:

  • All birth injuries (both maternal and to babies) be covered by ACC;
  • Mental health injuries (as a result of birth injuries and/or traumatic births) be covered by ACC;
  • A Te Ao Māori view and Te Tiriti o Waitangi are embeded in ACC legislation and practice;
  • The Maternity Action Plan include initiatives to support the mental health of women and their whānau following maternal birth injuries and traumatic childbirth;
  • ACC provide comprehensive information about the s 30 policy changes to ensure understanding;
  • ACC undertake more work around occupational disease and convene an advisory panel;
  • The threshold for compensation for work-related hearing loss be removed entirely;
  • The ACC Board includes representatives of workers and claimants;
  • Suicide disentitlement provisions be fully removed;
  • The legislation be applied retrospectively;
  • Workers and their representatives have a voice in decision-making, operational implementation and resourcing.

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