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Monday, 22 March 1999
Page: 4006


Mr Laurie Ferguson asked the Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence, upon notice, on 16 February 1999:

How many Australian Defence Force personnel were discharged in (a) 1996, (b) 1997 and (c) 1998 after medical officers had determined that their work-related injuries were temporary or probably temporary.


Mr Bruce Scott (Veterans' Affairs; Minister Assisting the Minister for Defence) —The answer to the honourable member's question is as follows:

Personnel suffering from temporary, or probably temporary, injuries are not discharged medically but are deemed to be Medical Class 3. Those suffering from permanent injuries may be downgraded to Medical Class 4 and discharged medically. Personnel discharged while Medical Class 3 are discharged for administrative reasons totally unrelated to their medical status.

The only way to determine those with a temporary work-related injury would be to examine manually the medical files of all those discharged from the ADF in the years in question. These medical files would then need to be cross-checked with DefCare and Veterans' Affairs.

To provide a complete response therefore, to the honourable member's question would require considerable time and resources and, in the interests of efficient use of departmental resources, I am not prepared to authorise the time and effort required to provide the information.