13 November 2015
MEDIA RELEASE – Queensland catches up: Victims of road traffic accidents set to receive lifetime care and support
Youngcare CEO Samantha Kennerley has welcomed this week’s announcement that people who suffer catastrophic injury in road traffic accidents will be eligible for lifetime care and support.
The change – which will bring Queensland into line with the rest of Australia – will affect up to three people a week involved in serious road traffic accidents. That is 1,550 people over the next 10 years.
Under the current fault-based Compulsory Third Party (CTP) insurance scheme, almost half of all people catastrophically injured in road traffic accidents are not eligible to receive compensation.
Youngcare grant recipient Zaine Hayter was a couple of weeks short of his 18th birthday when he rolled his car and sustained permanent brain injuries.
He was about to start a jackaroo job on a station in North Queensland. Instead, his devastated family received the call no family wanted to hear.
“We were dealing with the terrible news of his devastating injuries and had to come to terms with the fact that Zaine had no access to any long term financial support,” Melita Pratt, Zaine’s aunt, said.
“Without help, our remarkable, energetic, beautiful young boy was faced with living in an aged care residence. He was barely an adult.
“If the proposed legislation was in place, it would have meant the world of difference. The strain on the family was unbearable. We drained every resource we had.”
Mrs Kennerley said Zaine’s situation was all too familiar.
“Too many Queenslanders in this situation are left with few options for the rest of their lives,” Mrs Kennerley said.
“Without this no fault insurance scheme, many people find themselves without adequate ongoing rehabilitation or services that can make a huge difference to their long-term outcome.
“Just as the National Disability Insurance Scheme (NDIS) will provide much needed access to services, the National Injury Insurance Scheme (NIIS) will work in a similar way to enable people to access the right services at the right time.”
Youngcare has urged interested groups and individuals to make a submission to the bipartisan Communities, Disability Services and Domestic and Family Violence Prevention Parliamentary Committee.
Youngcare is a Queensland-based not for profit organisation committed to helping young Aussies with high care needs live life with choice, independence and dignity.
MEDIA CONTACT: Samantha Kennerley, Youngcare CEO | p: 07 3041 3400