This Week in Comp, May 5 – 9

By David Wylie, Editorial Coordinator

By David Wylie, Editorial Coordinator

This Week in Comp provides an overview of workers’ compensation news from across the country.

Safety

New funding allows crackdown on texting while driving in North Dakota
Law enforcement officials are using part of the money to put plainclothes officers in unmarked cruisers to catch motorists who text and drive…MORE

Texas Mutual offers solutions to 4 common safety issues in the oil and gas industry
Silica exposure, transportation incidents, short-service employees and management commitment are common safety issues in the oil and gas industry. Texas Mutual’s website includes simple tips for overcoming these challenges…MORE

OSHA renews partnership with AGC El Paso Chapter
The strategic partnership’s goal is to reduce injuries, illnesses, and fatalities by focusing on the four most common hazards in construction: falls, struck-by, caught-in-between and electrocution hazards…MORE

North Dakota tries to stem oil region traffic deaths
Traffic fatalities in North Dakota’s drilling regions keep climbing while the rest of the state’s roads are getting safer. Population surges and roads that need repair are driving the increase…MORE

TRIA’s pending expiration

The impact on workers’ compensation of allowing TRIA to expire
If Congress allows TRIA to expire, insurers could choose not to provide workers’ comp coverage to employers who present a high geographic concentration of potential losses. Businesses and taxpayers would largely finance losses from a catastrophic terror attack…MORE

Claims

Obesity as a disability
A federal district court ruled in April 2014 that obesity itself may be a disability. In workers’ comp claims, however, disability could be considered a pre-existing condition…MORE

Are you about to hire your next workers’ comp claim?
Too often, bad hiring decisions are at least partially to blame for workers’ comp claims. Of course, once the injury occurs, it is too late to change the decision. If you ask the right questions during the interview process, you can help ensure you do not hire your next costly workers’ comp claim…MORE

Industry trends

NCCI offers “balanced” outlook for workers’ compensation industry
A consistently improving combined ratio, third consecutive year of premium growth, and declining claim frequency are positive trends for the workers’ compensation industry, according to the NCCI’s annual State of the Line report. The report also notes industry challenges, including slow employment growth in manufacturing and construction, as well as the pending TRIA expiration…MORE

10 challenges ahead for workers’ compensation
Wage stagnation, opioid abuse and an aging workforce are among the challenges facing the workers’ compensation industry…MORE

Why workers’ comp claims will continue to trend downward
Workers’ comp claims have declined 2 to 3 percent per year for the past decade. A decrease in manufacturing jobs and increased focus on workplace safety are among the reasons the decline is likely to continue…MORE

Opioid epidemic

The dose makes the poison
Phil Walls, RPh, Chief Clinical and Compliance Officer for myMatrixx, wonders if the 100 daily opioid-related deaths in America are more accurately described as poisonings rather than overdoses. Overdose, except in the case of intentional suicide, implies an accident, explains Walls. Poisoning implies an intentional action…MORE

WCRI study shows little reduction in longer-term opioid use in most states
The study examined the prevalence of longer-term use of opioids in 25 states and how often the services recommended by medical treatment guidelines were used for monitoring and managing chronic opioid therapy…MORE

About the author
David Wylie is the senior technical writer at Texas Mutual Insurance Company. He works closely with Texas Mutual’s safety professionals to teach employers and their employees how to prevent workplace accidents and their associated costs. David holds the OSHA 10-hour general safety certification and a degree in journalism from Southwest Texas State University.

Links to and from this blog do not reflect any affiliation between Texas Mutual Insurance Company and third parties, and are not an endorsement by Texas Mutual Insurance Company of the linked sites (or their owners or operators) or of any content located there. Texas Mutual Insurance Company does not vouch for the availability or accuracy of any information contained on linked sites.

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