This Week in Comp, March 6, 2015

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

teen workerOklahoma bill would provide safety training to youth
A state Senate bill would allow schools to offer workplace safety training classes for kids in grades seven through twelve. About 60,000 teens are injured on the job every year…MORE

4 steps to a safer, healthier workforce
Employers are increasingly acknowledging the synergistic relationship between employee wellness and safety. By integrating the two programs, employers can maximize their return on investment…MORE

New WCRI study sheds light on rising hospital costs in workers’ compensation
A new study from the Workers Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) compares hospital outpatient costs across states, identifies key cost drivers and measures the impact of reforms. Texas and the 32 other states that participated in the study collectively represent 86 percent of the workers’ compensation benefits paid in the United States…MORE

Spring forward, but do it safely
This weekend, Americans will “spring forward” one hour in observance of daylight saving time. This annual rite of spring gives us a little extra sunshine in the summer months. It can also have a serious impact on our safety, especially behind the wheel…MORE

FDA warns consumers that sleep drugs can impair driving
sleep med graphicThe FDA is particularly concerned about extended-release forms of zolpidem. New data show that the morning after use, many people who take products containing extended-release zolpidem have drug levels that are high enough to impair driving and other activities. The FDA says women are especially vulnerable because their bodies clear zolpidem more slowly than men’s bodies…MORE

More states considering workers’ compensation drug formularies
Experts acknowledge that prescription drug formularies help reduce costs, improve patient outcomes and combat the opioid addiction epidemic. Currently, Texas, Washington, Ohio and Oklahoma are the only states reaping the benefits of state-regulated formularies, but that could soon change…MORE

Regulatory roundup
Texas Mutual’s weekly digest of safety and health news…MORE

The business case for workplace safety
In this installment of Texas Mutual’s blog series on the symbiotic relationship between wellness and safety, we make the business case for investing in safety training, personal protective equipment and other elements of a sound safety program…MORE

Poor timing as Maine considers revoking seatbelt law after 75-car pileup
African American man driving truckJust days after what is likely the state’s largest traffic accident, Maine is considering a bill that would allow adults to opt out of wearing seatbelts…MORE

WA man charged in scheme to get painkillers by using Seahawks players’ last names
Among the last names of football players and coaches the man is accused of using are Harvin, Largent, Sherman, Mora, Richardson, Hollenbeck, Robinson, Okung, Marino, Bledsoe and Henderson…MORE

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