Dr Jennings was admitted to the degrees of Bachelor Medicine and Bachelor of Surgery, University of Adelaide, in 1968 and he has also been admitted to the Higher Degree of Doctor of Medicine as well as Master of Arts from the same University, and Doctor of Philosophy from the Flinders University of SA. This was for a study of the reasons for the differential velocity of diffusion of technological change.
His Higher Doctorate in Medicine was for a thesis on the statutory and common law basis of medical power.
Prior to studying medicine he worked for the South Australian Railways in various subordinate positions (fireman, telegraphist, clerk, train controller) at Adelaide, Mount Gambier, Port Lincoln, Peterborough, Cockburn and worse.
He was a Senior Clinical Lecturer in Acute Care Medicine, University of Adelaide School of Medicine, and has taught interns, nurse practitioners and medical students in an Emergency Department. He (and Dr Ceciley Jennings) also teach Flinders University medical students.
He also held appointment as a member of the Clinical Teaching and Student Support Committee of the School of Medicine, University of Adelaide 2009-14.
The assessment of permanent impairment.
Referrals generally are only accepted from Return to Work SA or its Agents (Employers Mutual and Gallagher Bassett). Lawyers may refer clients by individual arrangement.
Before a referral can be accepted he welcomes the appropriate documentation. He hopes it arrives in reasonable time. This should include –
· The full name of the client, the date of birth and any claim number.
· Details of the injury or condition claimed.
· An up to date list of medication that they are taking and previous medication. This is quite important, given the prevalence of disease due to doctors’ prescribing, well-meaning pharmacists and idiots who shop for drugs and advice on Dr. Google.
· Facts agreed or disputed.
· Make it clear what sort of report you are looking for – an assessment of Whole Person Impairment, an Injury Scale Value or a Medical~Legal Report.
· Don’t ask for an evaluation of “…any other condition found”, or “…any rateable impairment” or something similarly vague. This drives us mad even though we are easy to get on with.
· Hospital notes if relevant.
· Specialist reports.
· Ancillary reports.
· Physical rehabilitation documents.
- Independent clinical assessments. Some of the highest quality and valuable evaluations are provided by experienced physiotherapists.
- Injury consultants
- Occupational therapists.
· General practitioner case notes. Sometimes we can read them.
· Copies of imaging reports.
· Specialist reports.
· Let us know if there are surveillance videos. – but we don’t want to see them.
AND…provided it doesn’t upset your sensibilities PLEASE ask your clients to wear underclothes, particularly if they are having assessments for erectile dysfunction, bowel disorders and related embarrassing things.
An important thing to remember is that under current legislation workers are limited to one WPI assessment per claim and all injuries from the one claim need to be assessed at the same time, otherwise the worker may subsequently be disadvantaged. Once the compensability issues surrounding any additional impairments which might turn up have been resolved the necessary assessment can be pursued.
Don’t worry if you forget to get a signed consent. Surely it must be obvious to anyone with at least marginal intelligence that if they are going to see a medical practitioner, that they are going to be interrogated and physically examined. If they don’t understand this, then maybe they need counselling. If they attend for evaluation of sexual or bowel impairments then they need to understand that the examination is not going to be that enjoyable.
Regardless of a client’s gender, a third party is always present during any physical examination and we will not make an exception to this. Consent will be asked if there is a medical student who wishes to be present for teaching purposes.
Appointments are made by telephoning 08 8297 2399.
Please let us have your email address if you want the reports sent to you promptly. Make sure it’s a valid address, especially if you are from the government.
You will find us very easy to get on with: we adhere very strictly to the parable of the Devil, the Candle and the Lamp.
The present Return to Work scheme generally is working well, although there are the kinds of problems which inevitably accompany complex and challenging government statutory organisations. However the Return to Work staff involved with handling the complexities of permanent impairment evaluation are remarkably astute, helpful and clever people who individually have a genuine commitment to making the legislation work.
Are there any aspects which worry me?
1. Long term disabled worker catastrophes and no-one cares.
2. Employers who treat workers like disposable products.
3. Multiple case managers. Some are brilliant. Some follow one another in quick succession and are always worse than the one they succeed.
4. Lack of proper rehabilitation/re-training and it’s often inappropriate. If you can’t read or write you can’t use a computer.
5. Disputes that go on for years – a decade or more.
6. Workers who end up unemployed and unemployable and doped up to the eyeballs on narcotic drugs.
7. Dangerous “high risk doctors”.
8. Also stupid lawyers who ask me in cross-examination why I didn’t ask a worker to “…walk on one foot…”.
The Motor Accident Injury Assessment Scheme (MAIAS)
This new Injury Scale Value scheme was introduced on 1 July 2015 and is working well.
Assessments are carried out only in relation to injuries which occurred after 30 June 2013.
Although MAIAS uses that famous publication AMA5, the methodology is somewhat different to the approach to evaluating permanent impairment.
Clearly there’s not much love lost between MAIAS and Return to Work (but we try hard to love them both).
We have consulting rooms at Mt Gambier and visit there regularly.
Visits to other country locations can be discussed with the staff.
Electronic mail should be sent to
email@example.com and copied to firstname.lastname@example.org
Hard copies of anything should go to either of the following –
P.O. Box 1, Plympton 5038
68 Mooringe Ave., North Plympton 5037.