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Minimizing the Impact of COVID-19 on Existing Workers’ Compensation Claims

By April 8, 2020 Insurance Insights

The new challenges presented by COVID-19 demand our attention, but we must remain mindful of issues present prior to the pandemic. This includes any open Workers’ Compensation claims.

If your organization has existing claims (or new ones), please review the following. These practices can help to ensure a favorable outcome for you and your injured employee.

  1. Keep in touch with the injured employee. Doctors’ offices are limiting their patient flow, non-life-sustaining medical procedures are postponed, and telemedicine is becoming common practice. With these changes to accessing medical services, it is important to check on the current status of your injured employee and make sure that they are receiving the medical treatment required.
  2. Schedule regular calls and request regular updates from the claim adjuster assigned to the case. The claim adjuster monitors the process of the entire claim. Maintaining a dialogue with this individual and anyone who also may be working on behalf of the insurance carrier will help to ensure that the process flows smoothly.
  3. Implement or continue a return-to-work program. During the pandemic, it is likely that the duration of a Worker’s Compensation claim will be longer than previously experienced. With restricted doctors’ visits, limitations with physical therapy or other rehab clearances, it may take longer for your injured employee to be released to return to full work status. Return-to-work programs are even more critical to minimize the duration and cost of lost time claims. Given the expectation that the medical system may take longer to respond, it’s especially critical to work with the treating doctor on medically approved work restrictions.

During these times, it is important to remain engaged with situations that unfolded prior to the pandemic. Doing so will help you avoid long-term damage. Work with your agent, your carrier, the injured employee, the medical community and keep an open line of communication with all. Following up on the process will play a critical role in the successful closure of the open claim.

Current times demonstrate how working with an independent agent benefits your organization. An independent agent can act as your liaison throughout the entire process, perform due diligence with follow up phone calls, and monitor the progress of the open claim. Your independent agent at the Seltzer Group has the capability to offer claims management services internally and through East Coast Risk Management. Whatever your situation may be, we at The Seltzer Group are happy to answer any questions you may have. We remain available to schedule a consultation call or meeting to discuss the needs of your organization. We can be reached at 888-366-1000.