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Latest news on personal injury and workers’ compensation.

Mandatory vaccinations can lead to comp claims, OSHA recordables

The demand for COVID-19 shots has stalled in the U.S., prompting some employers to implement mandates to get their staff fully vaccinated. However, experts warn that under such mandates, injuries or illnesses reported by employees from the vaccine can lead to workers compensation claims and recordable incidents on Occupational Safety and Health Administration logs. After first leaving the decision up…

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Outpatient costs higher where comp fee regulations limited

States with percent-of-charge-based fee regulations or no fee schedules for hospital outpatient care saw exponentially higher costs nationwide, according to a report released Thursday by the Workers Compensation Research Institute. Cambridge, Massachusetts-based researchers compared hospital payments for a group of common outpatient surgeries in workers compensation across 36 states from 2005 to 2019, finding costs to be more than double…

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Illinois House passes staph infection presumption bill

The Illinois House of Representatives passed a bill that would make it easier for some first responders who acquire methicillin-resistant staphylococcus aureus to obtain workers compensation benefits. H.B. 3662, which unanimously passed the House on Wednesday, would amend the state’s Workers Compensation Act to create a rebuttable presumption that firefighters, emergency medical technicians and paramedics who contract MRSA did so…

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Fall while walking to turn in timecard not compensable

A temporary university worker failed to prove that her fall on the way to turn in her timecard was work-related, an appellate court held Tuesday. In Purcell v. Illinois Workers Compensation Commission, the Illinois Appellate Court, Fourth District, Workers Compensation Commission Division affirmed an Illinois Workers Compensation Commission’s decision denying a worker’s claim for benefits after finding that she failed…

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Illinois Distribution Warehouse Cited for Virus Exposures; Fined $12K

A few days after employees at Midwest Warehouse and Distribution System Inc. gathered in its Naperville, Ill., facility breakroom for a luncheon, some workers experienced symptoms consistent with coronavirus exposure. Employees began reporting to the company that they had tested positive for the coronavirus on Oct. 27, 2020. A U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration investigation alleges…

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No Delays Found in Medical Care for Workers’ Compensation Claimants During COVID

Despite potential obstacles posed by the coronavirus pandemic, injured workers experienced no meaningful delays in access to medical treatment under their employers’ workers’ compensation programs during the pandemic. Research from the Workers’ Compensation Research Institute (WCRI) also shows that states have varied substantially in the percentage of their workers’ compensation claims that have been Covid-19 related. “We found no change…

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Illinois lawmakers pass compromise bill on pretrial interest in personal injury cases

The Illinois Senate passed a bill Thursday to allow victims in personal injury and wrongful death cases that reach a verdict to collect interest on money they receive from court, with the intent of incentivizing settlements in these cases. Gov. JB Pritzker vetoed an earlier version of the bill that was approved by both chambers in the January lame duck…

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Employee’s slip and fall suit against Walmart in Collinsville dismissed with prejudice

A Collinsville Walmart employee’s slip and fall lawsuit against the store was dismissed with prejudice by Madison County Circuit Judge Sarah Smith on April 1. Plaintiff Stephanie Mosley filed suit March 25, 2020, claiming that on her lunch break on Feb. 14, 2020, she slipped on water in a public area of the store and suffered injuries to her left…

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Telemedicine has largest comp impact in pandemic: Survey

Thirty-five percent of workers compensation claims organizations that have implemented new technology during the COVID-19 pandemic say telemedicine is the technology that has had the largest effect on business, according to survey results released by San Diego-based comp technology company Mitchell International, Inc. Of the 100 workers compensation professionals surveyed, 35% said telemedicine and predictive analytics are the technologies that…

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Investigate comp claimants on social media: Experts

From extreme sports competitions to amateur football and twerking, workers compensation investigators have uncovered many instances of workers fabricating injuries and pain. Employers must be committed to helping workers suffering from bona fide work-related injuries, but they also need to take steps to validate questionable injuries and vet social media to uncover fraudsters, said experts at a Wednesday session at…

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