Summary of a series of conferences on the subject of the ICF*

Nearly 200 people attended scientific conferences which were organised in November and December by the Polish Insurance Association together with the Polish Association of Medical Certification (PTOL). The conferences “ICF – A New Look at Humanity” were held in Wrocław, Lublin, Gdańsk and Warsaw. The Warsaw conference was co-organised by the Ministry of Agriculture and Rural Development. The events were attended by certifying physicians, court-appointed experts, representatives of science, the Social Insurance Institution, Agricultural Social Insurance Fund, and representatives of the insurance industry.

Topics concerning disabilities in the certifying systems in Poland as well as organisation and importance of comprehensive rehabilitation in limiting disabilities were discussed by Professor Anna Wilmowska – Pietruszyńska, M.D. – President of the PTOL. The Professor also pointed out that the opening of comprehensive rehabilitation centres in Poland in the near future will be the culmination of many years of work. Moreover, universities in Warsaw, Lublin and Wrocław will also offer a post-graduate course for future rehamanagers.
Dorota M. Fal – adviser to the Management Board of the Polish Insurance Association, explained what the ICF is and gave a presentation on its structure and application. Replying to a question about whether the ICF language describes the harm suffered by claimants, she presented the possibility of using the ICF to describe bodily injury or health impairment to determine the value of compensation and recompense. Meanwhile, use of the ICF in compensation practice was discussed interchangeably by Michał Kretkowski – President of ICR Sp. z o.o. and Konrad Bednarowski – Project Management Manager ICR Sp. z o.o.

One important conclusion can be drawn from all four conferences: the primary goal is to restore the ability of a person injured in an accident to function in society, and all solutions, including those of the insurers, should be devoted to attaining this goal. A necessary tool, approved by the WHO, which is transparent, clear, and intelligible to everyone, from physicians, through therapists to civil servants and business representatives, is the ICF.

*The International Classification of Functioning, Disability and Health (ICF), adopted by the World Health Assembly (WHO) in 2001, describes the characteristics typical for the state of health of humans in the context of their individual situations in life and the effect of the surrounding environment. Use of the classification to assess the health condition and its influence on further functioning of people is significant to efficient functioning of the health protection system, social policy as well as social and commercial insurance systems.