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Part 4: Australians dangerously ill scheme – overseas

17.4.1 Principle

  1. The Australians dangerously ill scheme is activated when a member is hospitalised with a very serious or serious illness or injury.

  2. This scheme provides support to a hospitalised member by arranging a visit from an approved person at Commonwealth expense.

17.4.2 Purpose

The purpose of this Part is to provide the support of an approved visitor to a member who is hospitalised overseas with a very serious or serious illness. The visit from an approved visitor is for the benefit of the member.

Note: Chapter 9 Part 3 Division 9 sets out the provisions for members who are hospitalised in Australia with a very serious or serious illness.

See: Chapter 9 Part 3 Division 9, Australians dangerously ill scheme – within Australia

17.4.3 Definitions

This table defines terms used in this Part.

Definitions
Term Definition in this Division
Approved period The period decided under section 17.4.7 for benefits to assist the approve visitor to visit the member under this Part.
Approved visitor A person who has been approved to visit a member who is in hospital at Commonwealth expense.
Hospital A military health care facility, public or private hospital or psychiatric facility.
Medical authority A person who is a qualified medical practitioner responsible for determining the medical condition of the member.
Serious illness Means the same as item 2 of the table in section 1.3.72, Serious illness.
See: Chapter 1 Part 3 Division 1 section 1.3.72, Serious illness
Very serious illness Has the meaning as in section 1.3.78, Very serious illness.
See: Chapter 1 Part 3 Division 1 section 1.3.78, Very serious illness

17.4.4 Person this Part applies to

  1. The CDF may approve a member as eligible for support under this Part when they meet all of the following conditions.

    1. The eligible person is one of the following.

      1. A member of the Permanent Forces.

      2. A member of the Reserves on continuous full-time service.

      3. A member of the Reserves who falls ill or is injured while on duty or in uniform.

    2. Note: In the total workforce model, the following arrangements apply.

      1. For the purpose of this policy, a member of the Permanent Forces may be described as a member in Service category 7. A member in Service category 6 is unlikely to be deployed.

      2. A member of the Reserves on continuous full-time service may be described as a member in Service category 3, 4 or 5 who is also on Service option C.

      3. A member of the Reserves may be described as a member in Service category 2, 3, 4 or 5.

    3. The medical authority has recommended that a visit will benefit the member in any of the following circumstances.

      1. The member has been classified as very seriously ill and is likely to remain so, or may die within the next 72 hours.

      2. The member has been classified as seriously ill.

      3. The member has been classified as suffering a serious medical condition and is hospitalised outside of the deployment or posting location to receive specialist treatment.

    4. The member is overseas.

  2. The CDF may approve a member on leave overseas as eligible for support under this Part if the member meets the criteria under subsection 1.

Persons who can make the decisions under subsection 17.4.4.1 and subsection 17.4.4.2 on behalf of the CDF:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

 

17.4.4A APS employees this Part applies to

The Secretary may approve an APS employee as eligible for assistance under this Part, if the following circumstances apply.

  1. The member is very seriously or seriously ill.

  2. The employee became very seriously or seriously ill while performing one of the following activities.

    1. Operational support duty.

    2. Travelling in conjunction with a period of operational support duty.

  3. The employee must meet one of the circumstances in paragraph 17.4.4.1.b.

  4. See: Paragraph 17.4.4.1.b, Person this Part applies to

Persons who can make the decision under subsection 17.4.4A on behalf of the Secretary:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

17.4.5 Persons who this Part does not apply to

This Part does not provide a visit at Commonwealth expense when the visitor is in the location where the member is in hospital.

Example: A member who is posted to Washington DC becomes seriously ill and is in hospital. The member's partner lives in Washington with the member. Support under this Part is not provided.

17.4.6 People who may be an approved visitor

  1. The CDF may approve one of the following persons as the approved visitor to visit the member at Commonwealth expense.

    1. A person identified by the member and recorded on PMKeyS as the primary emergency contact in the event of a casualty.

    2. The spouse or partner of the member.

    3. A dependant of the member.

    4. A parent of the member, if the member has no dependants recognised under section 1.3.82.

      Note: A parent of a member may include, but is not limited to, any of the following people.

      1. A biological parent.

      2. An adoptive parent.

      3. A foster parent.

      4. A step-parent.

    5. A child of the member.

      Note: This child is not necessarily a recognised 'dependent'.

      Example: The member has a child who lives with the member's former partner. The child has not been recognised as a dependent for pay and conditions purposes as the child does not live with the member.

    See: Chapter 1 Part 3 Division 2, Dependants and categorisation

  2. The approved visitor must meet both of the following conditions.

    1. They meet either of the following conditions.

      1. They normally live in Australia.

      2. They live in the overseas posting location with the member as the member's spouse or partner.

        Example: The member has a partner who is not a resident of Australia and who they met overseas. The partner lives with the member as a de facto partner in the overseas posting location.

    2. They must be fit to travel.

      Note: An approved visitor who has a medical condition that may be affected by travel must obtain written certification from a qualified medical practitioner that they are fit to travel.

  3. If the approved visitor is incapable or unable to travel and provide support to the eligible person, the approved visitor may nominate another person from one of the classes in subsection 1 to be considered.

  4. In exceptional circumstances, the CDF may approve any of the following people to accompany the approved visitor.

    1. A second parent of the member.

    2. One or more children of the member.

    3. An escort for the member's child.

    4. A carer of the approved visitor.

Persons who can make the decisions under subsection 17.4.6.1 and subsection 17.4.6.4 on behalf of the Secretary/CDF:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

17.4.7 Approved period for visit

  1. The member may have a visit at Commonwealth expense from an approved visitor for a period of up to seven consecutive days.

    Note: The seven consecutive days is inclusive of the return travel time.

  2. The CDF may approve additional benefits in relation to a visit when both of the following apply.

    1. The medical authority recommends that a longer period will significantly benefit the member.

    2. One of the circumstances in the following table applies.

Circumstances
Item Length of recommended visit... when...
1. up to 21 consecutive days the eligible person has had major surgery and the post operative recovery is to last longer than seven consecutive days.
the eligible person is undergoing specialist treatment in hospital that will last longer than seven consecutive days.
2. 21 or more consecutive days the eligible person has been assessed by the medical authority as likely to remain very seriously ill or seriously ill for longer than 21 consecutive days.

See also: Section 17.4.14, When the member's condition changes

Persons who can make the decision under subsection 17.4.7.2 on behalf of the Secretary/CDF:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

17.4.8 Long term illness

The member ceases to be eligible for assistance under this Division from the day they are provided a sustainable welfare management plan. This does not affect the return travel benefit for any approved visitor.

See: Regulation 58E of the Defence Force Regulations 1952, Provision of medical and dental treatment

Note: A sustainable welfare management plan to assist the member is normally developed if the member requires any of the following beyond 21 consecutive days.

  1. Long term specialist treatment.

  2. Palliative care.

  3. Long term rehabilitation as an inpatient.

17.4.9 Assistance for the approved visitor

An approved visitor may be provided with the following assistance under this Part.

  1. Travel insurance, documentation and vaccinations.

    See: Section 17.4.10, Travel insurance, documentation and vaccinations

  2. Travel.

    See: Section 17.4.11, Assistance with overseas travel

  3. Accomodation.

    See: Section 17.4.12, Assistance with accommodation

  4. Meals.

    See: Section 17.4.13, Assistance with meals

17.4.10 Travel insurance, documentation and vaccinations

  1. Travel costs for the approved visitor are provided to a similar standard as for official Defence travel.

  2. The approved visitor will receive official overseas travel insurance, including medical insurance, at Commonwealth expense.

  3. All costs associated with the application for a passport and any visas, including passport photos, are reimbursed to the approved visitor at Commonwealth expense on the production of receipts.

  4. If a country requires the approved visitor to have vaccinations, the approved visitor is responsible for arranging the vaccinations through a qualified medical practitioner. Any cost for these services which are not covered by Medicare or private health insurance may be reimbursed to the approved visitor.

17.4.11 Assistance with overseas travel

  1. Travel assistance for the approved visitor is only provided at Commonwealth expense in relation to a location where both of the following conditions are met.

    1. Any security risk is considered to be minimal.

    2. The location is accessible by public transport.

    Note: Only requests for travel to a location outside of an area of operation should be made under the Australians dangerously ill scheme.

  2. The approved visitor may be provided with return business class air travel at Commonwealth expense.

  3. If air travel is not available to the location, other modes of transport, such as rail or road, may be provided at Commonwealth expense.

  4. If the approved visitor arranges their own travel prior to the visit being approved, the CDF may approve the reimbursement of the lesser of the following costs.

    1. The amount incurred by the approved visitor, on the production of receipts.

    2. The amount that would have been incurred if the visit had been arranged by the Defence Community Organisation.

  5. Transport between the following locations should be by taxi. The costs may be reimbursed to the approved visitor on the production of receipts.

    1. The member's hospital.

    2. The approved visitor's accommodation.

    3. The airport, bus or train terminal.

    4. The approved visitor's home.

  6. The CDF may only approve the reimbursement of the lesser of the following travel costs incurred outside the approved period if the approved visitor has stayed beyond the approved period.

    1. The cost of the return journey incurred by the approved visitor. The approved visitor must produce receipts for the travel to allow for reimbursement.

    2. The normal departmental liability that would have been incurred if the return journey had been arranged by the Defence Community Organisation.

Persons who can make the decisions under subsection 17.4.11.4 and subsection 17.4.11.6 on behalf of the Secretary/CDF:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

17.4.12 Assistance with accommodation

  1. Accommodation at Commonwealth expense must be arranged by the Military Support Officer for the approved visitor at the location where the member is in hospital.

  2. The accommodation is to be within a reasonable distance from the hospital where the member is located, if practicable.

  3. The approved visitor may choose to stay beyond the approved period. However, the cost of accommodation occupied after the approved period will not be reimbursed.

    Exception: Subsection 17.4.14.2, When the member's condition changes

17.4.13 Assistance with meals

  1. The approved visitor may be reimbursed reasonable costs for meals on production of receipts.

    Exception: The approved visitor is not eligible for reimbursement for any alcoholic beverages purchased.

  2. The approved visitor may choose to stay beyond the approved period. However, the cost of meals consumed after the approved period will not be reimbursed.

    Exception: Subsection 17.4.14.2, When the member's condition changes

17.4.14 When the member's condition changes

  1. If the member's condition improves and their condition is no longer classified by a medical authority as very seriously ill or seriously ill, the benefits provided under this Part cease 24 hours after the approved person is informed of the member's reclassification.

  2. The CDF may approve an extension of the period for which benefits are provided under this Part when both of the following conditions are met.

    1. The approved visitor has made reasonable efforts to arrange return travel within the 24 hours.

    2. Return travel is unavailable due to circumstances beyond the approved visitor's control.

      Examples: Some circumstances beyond an approved visitor's control can include, but are not limited to, airline strikes, weather delays and sold out flights.

  3. The CDF may approve another visit for the member. The member must meet all of the following conditions.

    1. The member was previously classified by a medical authority as no longer very seriously ill or seriously ill.

    2. The member is reclassified as very seriously or seriously ill.

Persons who can make the decisions under subsection 17.4.14.2 and subsection 17.4.14.3 on behalf of the Secretary/CDF:
Director General Defence Community Organisation
Director National Operations Defence Community Organisation

Application to Reservists: Yes.




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