Disability Medical Assessments can only be performed by GCDs
About the assessments
Before a customer is referred for a Disability Medical Assessment with a GCD, DHS will complete non-medical eligibility checks (where required). A customer also attends a Job Capacity Assessment (JCA), completed by an allied health professional employed by DHS. A JCA is a comprehensive assessment of the functional impact of a customer’s medical condition on their ability to work.
The Disability Medical Assessment, conducted after a Job Capacity Assessment for some customers, is an independent assessment focusing on the customer’s medical conditions and their functional impact using the Social Security Determination 2011 - Tables for the Assessment of Work Related Impairment for Disability Support Pension (the Impairment Tables).
DHS will use the Disability Medical Assessment, along with other information, to determine a customer’s medical eligibility for DSP. The GCD does not decide whether or not the customer is eligible for DSP.
You will not complete a physical examination of the customer, however, you may ask them to demonstrate activities in line with legislated Impairment Tables, provided it is safe to do so.
You will interview the customer and review the medical evidence provided to form a view on whether the medical condition meets legislated criteria for DSP. You will also use legislated Impairment Tables to assign a rating for the functional impact of the condition.
The GCDs role is not to diagnose a customer’s condition nor to provide any medical advice or treatment to the customer.
The GCD must be independent, ensuring there is no conflict of interest with the customer, e.g. they cannot be the customer’s usual treating doctor nor can they know the customer.
About the support we provide
Practitioners who are interested in performing Disability Medical Assessments, and who meet the criteria below, receive online training to conduct assessments. GCDs also have ongoing access to Sonic HealthPlus Clinical Leads who provide mentoring and practical advice, and who are also available to discuss cases before reports are submitted online to DHS.
To become a GCD, you must have:
- a current medical practitioner qualification or current qualification to practise as a clinical psychologist
- full Australian Health Practitioner Registration Authority (AHPRA) registration with no notations, suspensions, or conditions
- Professional Indemnity Insurance to AHPRA standards
- no investigations or disciplinary proceedings in Australia or overseas and
- successfully completed training (via an online portal)
If you are interested in joining the Sonic HealthPlus GCD network, please email firstname.lastname@example.org and one of our operations team members will contact you.