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Govt. Called On To Ease Provisions For ACC-Opt-Out


Government Called On To Ease Provisions For Opting Out Of Acc

The country's number one provider of workplace health and safety services Fusion is calling for an easing of the conditions under which employers can opt out of ACC.

Fusion general manager Christina Rogstad says under the new ACC provisions companies can choose to join what is known as the Partnership Programme and receive discounts of up to 90 percent of their ACC premium if they meet a stringent set of criteria to ensure they have approved health and safety procedures in place.

At maximum discount rates they are also required to take out what is called Stop/Loss insurance with ACC which means they need to take out insurance for any accident claims over and above 150 to 200 percent of their base ACC premium.

Christina Rogstad says this makes opting out really only viable for large and medium sized companies which have the opportunity to significantly reduce accident costs through health and safety vigilance and good case and claims management.

She says it appears that different companies are being set different Stop/Loss premiums and there is considerable confusion on this. She says ACC needs to clarify the situation urgently.

As the country's largest provider of private accident insurance Fusion developed excellent systems for helping companies reduce accident costs.

"If the criteria for Stop/Loss insurance was reduced, the option of using a Third Party Administrator (TPA), such as ourselves, to manage accident cases and claims would become attractive to a much wider range of companies.

"We are extremely confident that given the right conditions we could make considerable savings for many employers, whereas under the present system they are simply facing increased ACC premiums."

Christina Rogstad says in this way the Government could show the country that it really does care about business well-being.

She says many business people have cited the removal of privatised ACC as a major influence on their lack of business confidence and confidence in the Government, and the Government could in one easy step go some considerable way to restoring that confidence.

"We have spoken with many employers who see the 200 percent premium as highly draconian. They would like to cover their own risk, because they believe with the right incentives and our help they could do better, but quite frankly those incentives are just not there for many of them at present."

Christina Rogstad says that employers covering their own workplace accident risk have far greater incentive to provide a safe workplace, therefore their employees benefit too.

"It's a win, win situation for the Government, employer and employee alike."

Christina Rogstad says she expects many in the business community to support her call for the 200 percent Stop/Loss premium to be reduced.


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