We will be releasing a new book on worker’s compensation in the next few months, but before we do, we wanted to give you a little taste of what’s in it. While we haven’t decided what the title will be, the premise of the book is to provide tips to help you reduce your work comp costs. Some of the tips in the book are simple and require just a slight change in the way organizations approach certain aspects of their work comp program. This is one of those ideas:
Visit Doctors On Work Time, Not Personal Time
This is one of the most overlooked cost saving techniques in the work comp arena – especially in public agencies. For some odd reason public agencies take offense that some one injured themselves on the job and then must take time to repair themselves. Don’t ever forget that the whole point is that it is “work related”.
The big issue that is left to lurk in the dark when people argue for taking personal time is that people who miss doctors appointments or delay treatment take 14 times longer to get back to work. What’s that mean? That three day injury just turned into 42 days before it wraps itself up. And that means simple injuries are now complex. More paperwork, more monitoring, more tracking, more potential for other things to go wrong in the treatment process and generally more dislike for the employee and the company.
But just because you send an injured employee to the doctor during working hours doesn’t mean that you have to let people abuse the system. Here’s how I handled it when I managed 150 high-harzard-clas (3 and 4) companies. If someone missed their doctor’s appointment or failed to show, then disciplinary action ensued. Going to the doctor is now part of the job tasks – your paying for them to go, so you should expect results.
Once you get on board with sending injured employees to the doctor during work time you are on your way to big savings in productivity and hard work comp costs.