Injury claims on the rise?
Statistics New Zealand provisional data shows that the total number of work-related injury claims increased by 1.5% in 2015 compared to 2014.
Provisionally, the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) received 230,200 work-related injury claims last year – marking the fourth consecutive year that the number of claims has increased. However, despite the total number of claims increasing, the incidence rate – number of claims per 1,000 full-time equivalent employees (FTEs) – fell from 111 to 110.
The total number of entitlement claims (which reflects more serious injuries), increased to 31,000 in 2015 compared to 30,100 in 2014. The incidence rate remained the same at 15.
While serious injury claims were up, the number of fatalities fell by 27 to 72. It’s important to note that fatalities are under-represented, as not all result in a fatal injury claim made to ACC.
Construction claims highest in six years
In 2015, the number of work-related injury claims increased for the fifth consecutive year in the construction industry – up 1,500 to 34,300; the highest total recorded in the past six years and 15% of the national total. Manufacturing (38,500) was the only industry to record more work-related injury claims than construction.
Conversely, the construction industry’s incident rate fell to its lowest level in the past six years, with 163 claims made per 1,000 FTEs.
Manufacturing (6,600) and construction (4,900) also held the top two spots when it came to the number of entitlement claims made by industry.
Note on the data
These figures are for claims accepted by the Accident Compensation Corporation (ACC) for work-related injuries. They are not a definitive count of all work-related injuries, because not all injuries result in a claim to ACC.
Statistics are based on one claim per person for each injury event during the calendar year, so if someone made two claims for two separate injury events then both are included.
The commentary focuses on the provisional statistics for 2015, which means the number of injury claims could change if they’re updated.