Abstract

Since its inception more than six decades ago, the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment, (AMA Guides), has become internationally accepted as a global benchmark and is used in the United States, Canada, certain European countries, the Middle East, Australia, New Zealand, and Southern Africa, as well as by the United Nations. When the AMA Guides, Sixth Edition, adopted the terminology and conceptual framework of disablement developed by the World Health Organization, this paradigm shift let to an increase in the worldwide influence and use of the AMA Guides. In the United States, the AMA Guides is used primarily in state and federal workers’ compensation systems and sometimes in automobile casualty and personal injury arenas. Most workers’ compensation jurisdictions across Canada use the AMA Guides formally by statute or regulation, or they accept its use informally as a standard tool to rate impairment. In Australia, the AMA Guides is used in both federal and individual state or territory compensation schemes for personal injuries that arise from work, as well as motor vehicle accidents (a table presents uses of the AMA Guides in Australian jurisdictions). New Zealand uses the AMA Guides, Fourth Edition, and the ACC User Handbook to the AMA “Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment,” Fourth Edition. The AMA Guides is used in Hong Kong to evaluate all types of damages for personal injury claims and also is referenced in Southern Africa, Europe, and countries in the Middle East.

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