Posted on March 30, 2012
In a recent issue of National Underwriter, Dave Lenckus gave readers 3 tips for controlling their organization’s workers’ comp medical costs. Much to our liking, the tips are ones we’ve been giving to our clients for years.
Establish a Culture of Safety
Proactive loss prevention is absolutely essential for work environments. Maintaining proper safety throughout an organization can decrease the occurrence of injuries which will ultimately lower your workers‘ comp claims. We encourage our clients to exhaust all efforts in order to prevent losses before they happen.
While maintaining proper safety is critical for injury prevention, employers must also be well prepared for when an injury does occur. Legitimate or not. With recent economic events, employers have seen spikes in workers‘ comp claims following, and often just before, layoffs. Many workers will consider reopening or a filing a new workers‘ comp claim as a source of income.
For many of our clients, we suggest that they diligently conduct ongoing testing of assorted physical functions related to a job within their organization, such as hearing exposure. This will give employers the most accurate baseline measurement that they can track and respond to quickly at the first sign of problems, instead of after a claim has been filed.
Making the Right Hires
Fortunately the economy appears to be strengthening, and many of our clients are experiencing an increase in orders and are rehiring to keep up with production demands. Whether our clients are hiring 1 or ten new workers, we encourage them to adopt at least two practices to avoid hiring high-risk workers.
Before a new worker is hired, it is important that a pre-employment physical be conducted. The potential hire will be screened by a doctor to ensure that he/she can safely perform the job, and any prior physical ailments will be identified and recorded.
Once a potential hire has been deemed a good fit for an organization, a thorough new hire orientation must be completed to familiarize the new hire with the work environment and to ensure he/she has a strong understanding of what is required from his/her position.
Employers can’t completely eliminate all risks involved, but there steps that can be taken to prepare for defending against those risks. Managing workers’ comp takes foresight, preparation and execution, but business owners and managers don’t have to go at it alone. Comp-SIGMA can help!
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