Jessie Green and her infant daughter were struck by a car outside Redland Hospital. The incident led to a long battle with RACQ.
Jessie Green and her infant daughter were struck by a car outside Redland Hospital. The incident led to a long battle with RACQ.

Mum and baby hit by car ‘bullied’ by RACQ

The RACQ has been sensationally accused of bullying after a mother and her baby were left out of pocket when they were struck by a car.

Redlands mother Jessie Green was pushing a pram with her baby daughter outside the Redlands Hospital when a driver lost control of their car and struck the pair.

Ms Green and her daughter suffered injuries and had to undergo comprehensive rehabilitation treatment.

But she was forced into a battle with RACQ over how much treatment the company would cover, despite having comprehensive third party insurance.

The situation has sparked claims of bully tactics, with a leading compensation lawyer saying no other insurance company uses the same strategy against its customers.

"RACQ makes it so hard to have everything approved that eventually you feel that you have no option but to give up," Ms Green told The Courier-Mail.

Ms Green said the practitioners she saw about her and her child's injuries weren't receiving the full amount sought from RACQ.

She ended up just paying it herself to ease her stress, despite having the coverage.

All CTP insurers in Queensland are bound by Rehabilitation Standards for CTP Insurers, which requires that insurers must take appropriate action to facilitate access to rehabilitation services - of the claimant's choice - for their injuries, compensation lawyer Travis Schultz said.

Mr Schultz said he had serious concerns for patient welfare and the viability of small allied health providers who are being told by RACQ to fit their service fees into the price range set by their new strategy to reduce claim costs.

"If you have been injured in a motor vehicle accident through no fault of your own, and need rehabilitation treatment, the last thing you should have to worry about is whether you can arrange those visits with a trusted, local health provider and not be out of pocket," Mr Schultz said.

"No other CTP insurer in Queensland has attempted to interpret the rules in such an obviously egocentric way."

In a statement, RACQ said it complied with the regulations set by the State Government and the Motor Accident Insurance Commission, which is the regulator for the compulsory third party scheme. 

"There has been no indication, from the courts or the regulator, that RACQ is doing anything wrong. We have been a supporter of Queensland motorists for more than a century and remain a CTP insurance provider to provide competition to the big national and international firms," the statement read.

"Why should doctors who treat seriously injured people for one scheme be paid more than those same doctors treating people under a different scheme? Isn't it fair that doctors are paid the same regardless of whether it is an injury under CTP or WorkCover?"

Originally published as Mum and baby hit by car 'bullied' by RACQ