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August 2013: Workers’ Comp Advisory

Just what the doctor ordered: how you can control Workers’ Comp prescription drug costs

While the overall share of prescription drugs, as a percentage of medical costs in Workers’ Comp, has held steady at around 18%, the drugs that are being prescribed and how they are being fulfilled are of major concern… Read More.

How to stop higher Workers’ Comp pricing pressures

The complexities of Workers’ Compensation make it difficult for even the most well intended employers to achieve long-term, consistent progress in cost containment. The responsibilities of the major stakeholders and the red flags to look out for are described here… Read More.

Reducing lost time pays big dividends

Unlike many types of insurance, Workers’ Compensation works as a financing mechanism with the insurance company paying for the injury and then recouping the costs plus 200% – 300% through the Experience Modification factor. Costs mount very quickly when the claim moves from medical-only to lost-time… Read More.

HR Tip: Target memo says not all Hispanics eat tacos

The memo, “Organization Effectiveness, Employee and Labor Relations Multi-Cultural Tips” went viral and generated outrage. There is a lesson to be learned… Read More.

OSHA Watch

  • Outreach campaign aimed at reducing MSDs among health care workers
  • New National Emphasis Program targets occupational exposure to Isocyanate
  • Enforcement memorandum targets means of exits
  • New nail gun safety web page and ePub
  • Recent fines and awards
  • Read More.

Legal Corner

  • Suspension of alcoholic employee does not violate ADAAA
  • Working full-time an essential function of the job


  • Supreme Court’s DOMA ruling affects FMLA
  • FMLA absences continue to rise; new report shows industries with most workers on leave
  • “Honest belief” doctrine dooms retaliation claim

Workers’ Compensation

  • Suit over pornographic emails not barred by Workers’ Comp exclusive remedy – California
  • Employer not responsible for illness suffered by family member of asbestos worker – Maryland
  • Truck driver’s injuries not covered by No-Fault Act – Michigan
  • Preexisting condition basis for denial of benefits – Nebraska
  • Employee sustained psychic injury when told she owed tax on $100,000 of travel reimbursements – New York
  • Undisclosed “light” work on residential renovation was not fraud – New York
  • Company’s probation policy violates Workers’ Compensation laws – New York
  • Time between injury and death of worker preclude death benefits – Pennsylvania
  • Self-procured surgery compensable in light of aborted surgery by panel physician – Tennessee
  • Read More.

Things you should know

  • Rates of serious injuries within same industry vary widely by state according a new report
  • Absenteeism due to depression costs employers $23 billion annually
  • Nurses association releases safe patient handling guidelines
  • MCSA clarifies off-duty time requirements
  • Trucking research institute launches fatigue management website
  • Florida’s ban limiting doctor dispensing cuts opioid use
  • New strain of MRSA linked to industrial livestock workers: study
  • Read More.