PTSD is DONE to you, it does not DEFINE you...
One is a member of a country, a profession, a civilization, a religion. One is not just a man.
~Antoine de Saint-Exupéry, Wartime Writings 1939-1944, translated from French by Norah Purcell
FINALLY, MAY 17, 2018 BILL 9
REACHED ROYAL ASSENT AND BC HAS OUR "PRESUMPTIVE CLAUSE"
We know we are missing our Dispatchers, but Minister Bains acknowledges this role will be amended.
Presumptive Legislation For BC
Unlike the other Provinces, our Government rejected our Private Members Bill M203 put forward by Shane Simpson, NDP, TWICE, Opposition to Minister of Labor, Shirley Bond.
THIS IS WHAT WE PROPOSED,
AND BELOW IS THE NEW BILL 9 LEGISLATION!
PROPOSED PRESUMPTIVE CLAUSE FOR THE FIRST RESPONDERS OF BRITISH COLUMBIA
• Under section 5.1” Add “Presumptive Clause “The Mental Health Injury (MHI) shall be presumed, unless the contrary is proven, to be an injury that arose out of and occurred during the course of the worker’s employment in response to a traumatic event AND/OR a series of traumatic events to which the worker was exposed in carrying out the worker’s duties as any emergency medical first responders, firefighters, police officers, peace officers or 911 communication officers;
In this section, (a) “emergency medical first responders” means an individual who is registered as a member of the designated health discipline of Emergency Medical Responder, Professional Care Paramedic, Advanced Life Support, Critical Care Paramedic, Infant Transport Paramedic full-time, or part-time under the Health Disciplines Act – specific areas of practice; (b) “firefighter” means a full-time, part-time, casual or volunteer firefighter; (c) “peace officer” means an individual appointed as a peace officer police officer, sheriff, corrections officer; and “911 operators”, means individuals full-time, part time employed or reserves under any of the above Regulated Organizations.
• Under Section 5.1: Remove PTSD and change to Mental Health Injury (MHI), to include and/or any mental health disorder or symptoms of PTSD or other such mental health injuries that fall under the most up to date Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders. (as of today, June 2017 that is the DSM V);
• Under Section 5.1 add: Upon receipt of a Claim and a report of a psychologist/psychiatrist, diagnosing the Worker has a mental Health Injury and is a work related injury, the Worker is put into the appropriate treatment immediately (a psychologist who has full comprehension not only of of the current DSM disorders that fall under a mental health injury, but one that has a proven and reputable knowledge of the inner workings of a First Responders responsibilities, its distinct pressures and heiarchy. This step must also include the Worker's Specialist and the Worker as listed above; there will be consistency in the Worker's treatment provider at the Worker's and the present specialist's discretion; any alterations or changes to any such treatment must involve the worker and the Worker's present therapist to ensure this would be beneficial to the Worker vs causing them further trauma;
• Under Section 5.1 add: WSBC has a three month maximum time frame at any time during the claim decision process; A decision will be made based on one to three Reports (if necessary) from the Worker's psychiatrist and/or psychologist and one IME report if further psychological assessments are required, ALL parties must agree if it is in the Worker's best interest and if agreed upon, ALL three parties must agree on the individual who is doing the assessment;
• Under Section 5.1 add: When a Worker is “fit to return to work” there will be a discharge/follow up plan to be agreed upon by WSBC, the specialist and the Worker. Under Policy item 97.34, Conflict of Medical Opinion, the probable difference of opinion shall be discussed with the physicians (should refer to the treating physician or specialists) involved. The Worker and their return to work meets the Worker’s needs. If a new career path is required, then all three parties must agree, based on an outside third party employment counselling centre, what career path is best suited and is of interest of the Worker including finding a job on par with what the Worker was accustomed and if training will be required;
. Any out of the worker's out of pocket expenses that is incurred to improve their mental health, not matter how seriously the impairment or restrictions, the worker, their medical specialist along with WSBC will discuss the issue and if it is is in the worker's best interest, WSBC will repay the worker said costs, ie: extra maid services, care aid assistance for mean preperation due to sever depression, a cost of relocation for safety reasons etc.
* Under Section 5.1 add: When a Worker has retired and a mental health injury is diagnosed, and all of the criteria is met as required under this Clause, the Worker may submit a Claim for a Compensatble Injury as though they had been working at the time the injury was diagnosed (precendence has been set with the Fire Fighter Presumption with their Cancer and Heart Disease Presumptive Clauses)
Alberta was the first province in Canada to provide presumptive workers’ compensation coverage for these types of claims.
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BILL 9 – 2018
WORKERS COMPENSATION AMENDMENT ACT, 2018
HER MAJESTY, by and with the advice and consent of the Legislative Assembly of the Province of British Columbia, enacts as follows:
1 Section 5.1 of the Workers Compensation Act, R.S.B.C. 1996, c. 492, is amended
(a) by adding the following subsection:
(1.1) If a worker who is or has been employed in an eligible occupation
(a) is exposed to one or more traumatic events arising out of and in the course of the worker's employment in that eligible occupation, and
(b) has a mental disorder that is recognized, in the most recent American Psychiatric Association's Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, at the time of the diagnosis of the mental disorder under subsection (1) (b) of this section, as a mental or physical condition that may arise from exposure to a traumatic event,
the mental disorder must be presumed to be a reaction to the one or more traumatic events arising out of and in the course of the worker's employment in that eligible occupation, unless the contrary is proved. , and
(b) in subsection (4) by adding the following definitions:
"correctional officer" means a correctional officer as defined by regulation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council;
"eligible occupation" means the occupation of correctional officer, emergency medical assistant, firefighter, police officer, sheriff or, without limitation, any other occupation prescribed by regulation of the Lieutenant Governor in Council;
"emergency medical assistant" means an emergency medical assistant as defined in section 1 of the Emergency Health Services Act;
"firefighter" means a member of a fire brigade who is
(a) described in paragraph (c) of the definition of "worker" or employed by the government of Canada, and
(b) assigned primarily to fire suppression duties whether or not those duties include the performance of ambulance or rescue services;
"police officer" mean an officer as defined in section 1 of the Police Act;
"sheriff" means a person lawfully holding the office of sheriff or lawfully performing the duties of sheriff by way of delegation, substitution, temporary appointment or otherwise.
2 Section 6.1 (1) (a) is repealed and the following substituted:
(a) described in paragraph (c) of the definition of "worker" or employed by the government of Canada, and .
Transition – mental disorder presumption
3 On or after the date this section comes into force, the Workers' Compensation Board and the Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal must apply section 5.1 of the Workers Compensation Act as it reads on the date this section comes into force when making a decision respecting a claim that involves section 5.1 of the Workers Compensation Act and that was made, but not finally adjudicated, before the date this section comes into force.
Transition – firefighters' occupational disease presumption
4 On or after the date this section comes into force, the Workers' Compensation Board and the Workers' Compensation Appeal Tribunal must apply section 6.1 of the Workers Compensation Act as it reads on the date this section comes into force when making a decision respecting a claim that involves section 6.1 of the Workers Compensation Act and that was made, but not finally adjudicated, before the date this section comes into force.
5 This Act comes into force on the date of Royal Assent. MAY 17, 2018
SECTION 1: [Workers Compensation Act, section 5.1] creates a presumption for a worker with a mental disorder, as set out, who is or was employed in an eligible occupation as defined in that section.
SECTION 2: [Workers Compensation Act, section 6.1] extends the occupational disease presumptions in respect of section 6.1 (1.1) to (4) of the Act to firefighters employed by the government of Canada.
SECTION 3: [Transition – mental disorder presumption] clarifies how section 5.1 of the Workers Compensation Act must be applied to a claim that is made but not finally adjudicated before the date this section comes into force.
SECTION 4: [Transition – firefighters' occupational disease presumption] clarifies how section 6.1 of the Workers Compensation Act must be applied to a claim that is made but not finally adjudicated before the date this section comes into force.
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