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Virgin Australia mental health/insurance issues

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Virgin Australia mental health/insurance issues

Old 31st Aug 2020, 09:31
  #21 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
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Originally Posted by Stickshift3000 View Post
From who? The company is in administration.

If it trades again, any potential insurance payout to him won't currently be on the creditor list. Rotten timing, and the situation stinks.
You could logically make an argument that this situation actually falls under "medical negligence".

My understanding is that each and every doctor must be individually insured for medical negligence which of course is completely separate to loss of licence insurance and would also theoretically allow for much larger payouts. That would solve the problem at least as to whether Virgin is in administration or not.
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 09:40
  #22 (permalink)  
 
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The issue of continuing to fly is nothing to do with Virgin. It was a medical decision. The fact that Virgin paid the doctor's salary is irrelevant. Whether the doctor was correct in continuing to issue a medical would require an expert opinion based on his notes. So we cant decide, only postulate. Medical negligence would be very difficult yo get past a court because the standard against which the doctor would be compared would be a generalist occupational health doctor or a GP, not a consultant psychiatrist. In any case the pilot made money by continuing to fly, he didnt lose money, so there is no financial loss.

The pilot had a medical so Virgin was not at risk

Virgin may have failed to take out loss of license insurance in which case in the UK it would merely be a breech of contract and a matter for an employment tribunal or the county court for financial loss.
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 09:45
  #23 (permalink)  
 
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The Klaxon.com

From Wikipedia, the free encyclopedia
Jump to navigationJump to search The Klaxon.com Type of business Private Type of site News & blogging, Commentary and analysis Available in English Founded December 2009 Headquarters New York City, New York
,
U.S. Owner Joshua Wilwohl
Chuck Frank Founder(s) Joshua Wilwohl
Chuck Frank Key people Joshua Wilwohl, Editor-in-chief
Chuck Frank, Publisher Employees 20 URL www.theklaxon.com Alexa rank 25,288,916 (April 2013)[1] Registration Optional Launched December 1, 2009 Current status InactiveThe Klaxon.com was an online news organization that offered commentary and analysis on emergencies and disasters around the world.[2][3][4][5][6] It was unique not only for its content, but also because it was operated completely on handheld devices, such as the iPhoneand BlackBerry, by staff anywhere in the world.[7][8] It was co-founded in 2009 by Joshua Wilwohl and Chuck Frank.[2][5][8]

References[edit]

  1. ^ "Theklaxon.com Site Info". Alexa Internet. Retrieved 2013-04-22.
  2. ^ Jump up to: a b [1][dead link]
  3. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2010-04-24.
  4. ^ "World Have Your Say - Downloads - BBC World Service". BBC.
  5. ^ Jump up to: a b "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-06-09. Retrieved 2010-04-13.
  6. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2010-06-13. Retrieved 2010-04-23.
  7. ^ "Archived copy" (PDF). Archived from the original (PDF) on 2011-07-27. Retrieved 2010-04-23.
  8. ^ Jump up to: a b "HugeDomains.com - TheKlaxon.com is for sale". The Klaxon. 2017-10-04. Retrieved 2018-05-07.
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 10:01
  #24 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Radgirl View Post
The issue of continuing to fly is nothing to do with Virgin. It was a medical decision. The fact that Virgin paid the doctor's salary is irrelevant. Whether the doctor was correct in continuing to issue a medical would require an expert opinion based on his notes. So we cant decide, only postulate. Medical negligence would be very difficult yo get past a court because the standard against which the doctor would be compared would be a generalist occupational health doctor or a GP, not a consultant psychiatrist. In any case the pilot made money by continuing to fly, he didnt lose money, so there is no financial loss.

The pilot had a medical so Virgin was not at risk

Virgin may have failed to take out loss of license insurance in which case in the UK it would merely be a breech of contract and a matter for an employment tribunal or the county court for financial loss.
According to the article it states the following:

"The psychiatrist found that Boyd was
“well below the minimum standard of mental health for a pilot” recommending his license be revoked immediately."

The article then goes on to say this immediately after:

"
This recommendation was sent to the referring Virgin Australia doctor.But three months on, Boyd was again mailed his medical certificate from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA)."

If that is true then how on earth is that not medical negligence, did the virgin australia doctor have appropriate psychiatric qualifications in order to make an assessment that went against what the psychiatrist and the pilot was saying?

If this was a physical issue (for e.g. epilepsy) instead of a mental health issue than what would the outcome have been if the virgin doctor still went against the advice of the specialist and there was a subsequent accident?
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 10:20
  #25 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jun 2020
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The insurance issue aside, surely the doctor is on the hook if he’s continued to issue a medical in the face of a Pshychiatrist’s report? Why would any doctor allow themselves to be put in that position if there was an accident and a paper trail from the psychiatrist?
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 10:22
  #26 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Nov 2016
Location: NSW
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Originally Posted by lucille View Post
This must be the first pilot ever to voluntarily ground himself for medical reasons. Everyone else I know lives in a state of terror worrying that they may be grounded for medical reasons.
The random punitive way CASA AVMED operate does it really surprise you that the majority of people think like that?
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 10:27
  #27 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by coaldemon View Post
At what age does loss of licence cut out in the VARA award? Not that we would be able to see them but needless to say the Doctor's reports would be interesting on the matter.
Seriously, do Not want to offer on this (& apologies Mr "coaldemon", but- the most relevant post.....)!!!!

Was, the 'Loss of License' Policy (attached to the Award) 'Paid'- and, as such the Cover in force, at that 'given' Point In Time....????

'IT' is all Bad/on many levels, and not in any way acceptable- by the 'read'.

Then- 'What' else is not paid/funded and enforceable.......????

Just a question/contention, as "Stuff" is now 'starting' to emerge.....

rgds all/& be Well
S28- BE
(particularly, to those afflicted in this)
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 11:41
  #28 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Sep 2019
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Originally Posted by Boeingpilot738 View Post
Why would any doctor allow themselves to be put in that position if there was an accident and a paper trail from the psychiatrist?
That is actually a really really interesting question.

The only thing I can think of is that possibly the doctor was either put under extreme pressure by upper management to ignore the psychiatrists recommendation or alternatively the final decision was taken out of his hands entirely. Therefore, the final decision was presumably not even possibly being made by a doctor at all, let alone a specialist!

The latter would actually make more sense to me as upper management would primarily be more concerned about financial implications. Although, last time I checked the resulting class action from an accident would be infinitely more expensive and damaging to the company from a PR perspective so if that is true then the logic employed by Virgin management is still flawed if relying solely on financial considerations.

I still do not believe that any of this lets the doctor off the hook though for medical negligence. Considering, the significant safety implications of this situation the Virgin doctor could if nothing else have made an anonymous report to CASA. Why did no one at Virgin even consider to do this?
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 15:15
  #29 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Just a Grunt View Post
Without trivialising this poor man's illness, this situation calls to mind the writing of Joseph Heller:
"You mean there's a catch?"

"Sure there's a catch," Doc Daneeka replied. "Catch-22. Anyone who wants to get out of combat duty isn't really crazy."

There was only one catch and that was Catch-22, which specified that a concern for one's own safety in the face of dangers that were real and immediate was the process of a rational mind. Orr was crazy and could be grounded. All he had to do was ask; and as soon as he did, he would no longer be crazy and would have to fly more missions. Orr would be crazy to fly more missions and sane if he didn't, but if he was sane, he had to fly them. If he flew them, he was crazy and didn't have to; but if he didn't want to, he was sane and had to. Yossarian was moved very deeply by the absolute simplicity of this clause of Catch-22 and let out a respectful whistle.


Yet trivializing it is just what you did
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 21:44
  #30 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Jul 2013
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"The psychiatrist found that Boyd was “well below the minimum standard of mental health for a pilot” recommending his license be revoked immediately."

The article then goes on to say this immediately after:

"
This recommendation was sent to the referring Virgin Australia doctor.But three months on, Boyd was again mailed his medical certificate from the Civil Aviation Safety Authority (CASA)."

If that is true then how on earth is that not medical negligence, did the virgin australia doctor have appropriate psychiatric qualifications in order to make an assessment that went against what the psychiatrist and the pilot was saying?
I would always be careful about accepting something reported in a news article at face value, but it is probable the psychiatrist was just that - a psychiatrist and not a AME or DAME. It is very common for surgeons, cardiologists, neurologists etc of the highest calibre to give a report saying a pilot is fit to fly but for the pilot not to be given a medical simply because a consultant not involved in aviation is not trained as to the requirements. The DAME or AME is not in many cases a consultant or specialist in that field but is trained to interpret the Authority's requirements, so the psychiatrist may simply be wrong. Indeed it is possible the DAME sent the report to CASA whose own psychiatrist reviewed it and the Authority then issued the medical.

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Old 31st Aug 2020, 23:25
  #31 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Apr 2002
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Does Virgin's loss of licence insurance cover against mental health issues, I have seen other Airline policies that specifically exclude such issues. For those still flying, it might be worth your while to check just what is covered.
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 23:27
  #32 (permalink)  
 
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The DAME or AME is not in many cases a consultant or specialist in that field but is trained to interpret the Authority's requirements, so the psychiatrist may simply be wrong. Indeed it is possible the DAME sent the report to CASA whose own psychiatrist reviewed it and the Authority then issued the medical.
I think this is highly possible.
Hypothetical:
Is it possible that many of us bemoan the fact that those [email protected] at AvMed "stop us flying", then, in a situation where they (perhaps) do the opposite and give someone the tick in the box, we go "Oh, look how reckless AvMed are!"?
Obviously there would be questions to be asked about company influence, etc, etc...
Just putting it out there...
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 23:32
  #33 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Kelly Slater View Post
Does Virgin's loss of licence insurance cover against mental health issues, I have seen other Airline policies that specifically exclude such issues. For those still flying, it might be worth your while to check just what is covered.
The Australian Air Pilots Mutual Benefit Fund (MBF) provides some limited cover for some mental illnesses - depending on the type (schizophrenia, bipolar, etc) you may be eligible for your Capital Payment or the Disability Payment. Note that depression is only covered by the Disability Benefit portion. But at least there is some coverage.
EDIT - not sure if this is what applies to Virgin pilots.

Last edited by josephfeatherweight; 31st Aug 2020 at 23:45. Reason: Clarify I don't know what applies to Virgin pilots.
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Old 31st Aug 2020, 23:42
  #34 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by josephfeatherweight View Post
The Australian Air Pilots Mutual Benefit Fund (MBF) provides some limited cover for some mental illnesses - depending on the type (schizophrenia, bipolar, etc) you may be eligible for your Capital Payment or the Disability Payment. Note that depression is only covered by the Disability Benefit portion. But at least there is some coverage.
Ironically, the job itself is quite often the root cause of depression and while recovery is certainly possible with depression, it’s unlikely while the individual remains within the industry.
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 00:45
  #35 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Kelly Slater View Post
Does Virgin's loss of licence insurance cover against mental health issues, I have seen other Airline policies that specifically exclude such issues. For those still flying, it might be worth your while to check just what is covered.
This is an extremely good point.

When I was shopping for life insurance and income protection insurance a while back, I found various companies would not cover you if you committed any kind of aviation beyond travelling as a passenger on an RPT carrier. Want to take a hot air balloon flight over the Hunter Valley? Nope, not covered if you die or are injured to the point you can no longer work. Want to learn to fly? Not a chance, but you 'might be covered by the flying schools insurance'...One idiot mob's PDS (BT Insurance through St George I think it was) had you sign a declaration to the effect of "I do not perform any activities described in the 'list of prohibited activities'. When I called to ask about this 'list' I was told it was 'commercial in confidence' and you could only tell them what you do and they will tell you if it is on 'the list'. Apparently flying in a plane you built in your back shed is most definitely on the list....

For those of you who hold such policies, it might pay to double check the PDS and the fine print, just in case...
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 00:54
  #36 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: May 2002
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Angry

Originally Posted by KRviator View Post
This is an extremely good point.

When I was shopping for life insurance and income protection insurance a while back, I found various companies would not cover you if you committed any kind of aviation beyond travelling as a passenger on an RPT carrier. Want to take a hot air balloon flight over the Hunter Valley? Nope, not covered if you die or are injured to the point you can no longer work. Want to learn to fly? Not a chance, but you 'might be covered by the flying schools insurance'...One idiot mob's PDS (BT Insurance through St George I think it was) had you sign a declaration to the effect of "I do not perform any activities described in the 'list of prohibited activities'. When I called to ask about this 'list' I was told it was 'commercial in confidence' and you could only tell them what you do and they will tell you if it is on 'the list'. Apparently flying in a plane you built in your back shed is most definitely on the list....

For those of you who hold such policies, it might pay to double check the PDS and the fine print, just in case...
I rank insurers and insurance companies up there with airline directors and exec management
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 02:13
  #37 (permalink)  
 
Join Date: Aug 2004
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Isn’t this a major safety issue? Especially right now?
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 02:17
  #38 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Kelly Slater View Post
Does Virgin's loss of licence insurance cover against mental health issues, I have seen other Airline policies that specifically exclude such issues. For those still flying, it might be worth your while to check just what is covered.

QF SH EA was modified about 5 years ago, at company’s request, to narrow the definitions related to Psych and loss of license. The definitions at the time were from the 60’s and comparatively broad.
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 10:44
  #39 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Radgirl View Post
I would always be careful about accepting something reported in a news article at face value, but it is probable the psychiatrist was just that - a psychiatrist and not a AME or DAME. It is very common for surgeons, cardiologists, neurologists etc of the highest calibre to give a report saying a pilot is fit to fly but for the pilot not to be given a medical simply because a consultant not involved in aviation is not trained as to the requirements. The DAME or AME is not in many cases a consultant or specialist in that field but is trained to interpret the Authority's requirements, so the psychiatrist may simply be wrong. Indeed it is possible the DAME sent the report to CASA whose own psychiatrist reviewed it and the Authority then issued the medical.
Not trying to engage in a game of Top Trumps re. medical roles and the hierarchies within, but I'd say the advice of a psychiatrist on mental health issues for pilots beats the AME. Whilst the AME is an expert on all matters of aviation, for example the factors pertaining to vision, spatial awareness, cardiovascular function, respiratory function in a potentially hazardous environment (rapid cabin depressurization), etc. their knowledge and understanding in relation to psychiatry is less.

If the AME referred the pilot for cardiovascular investigations and they showed an underlying arrhythmia, the AME could choose to suspend the Class 1 medical, because their would be an increased risk. If the same AME referred to a psychiatrist because there were psychological concerns and these showed a risk, the AME would seriously have to explain why they did not accept the opinion of their colleague.
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Old 1st Sep 2020, 10:47
  #40 (permalink)  
 
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Originally Posted by Kelly Slater View Post
Does Virgin's loss of licence insurance cover against mental health issues, I have seen other Airline policies that specifically exclude such issues. For those still flying, it might be worth your while to check just what is covered.
A loss of licence insurance covers a loss of licence or should unless its due to a deliberate self inflicted injury.
Having said that who knows or indeed finds out about the limits of their cover until its needed and then are in for a shock since parasites like Scurrah and his ilk became involved in our industry.
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