A permanent impairment assessment (PIA) is an assessment performed by a specialist physician who has been approved as an accredited assessor by ReturnToWorkSA. When a worker’s injury has stabilised, as determined by the treating medical practitioner and rehabilitation team, the case manager will discuss referral to an accredited assessor for a PIA. During the assessment, the specialist physician will determine:
- whether maximal medical improvement has been reached;
- whether an impairment exists as a result of the injury;
- whether this impairment is permanent; and
- what degree of whole person impairment (WPI) exists as a result of the injury.
The WPI is reflected in the form of a percentage score calculated by totaling the percent of permanent impairment sustained in each area of the body. A WPI score between 5% and 30% will qualify the injured worker to receive once off economic and non-economic loss lump sum payments. A WPI score of 30% or more (a seriously injured worker) may result in ongoing income support payments and medical expense coverage until pension age.
A worker can choose which accredited assessor they would like to see.
For more information about CHG’s accredited assessors, click here.