Reply To: Employer doesn't buy into Recovery at Work

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I've found that many employers do not know about the 70% reduction of a med only claim in the mod calculation - assuming they are in an ERA state - and the impact this can have on the experience mod across only a few claims. So they're often considering just the immediate cost to their bottom line (payroll for recovery @ work) and not the medium & long term cost savings afforded by a reduced experience mod.

I break down the financial impact keeping claims to medical only has on the mod with the 70% reduction. If they actually have claims, this is more impactful to show the actual impact on the mod RTW would have had if they were able to keep the claims to med only. Then, I compare their out of pocket cost of RTW (assuming they are paying wages on the actual claims & getting zero productivity from the employee) to the impact on the 1 and 3-year experience mod & resulting premium savings. Typically the 3-year cost savings of RTW will far eclipse the couple thousand dollars they would have spent paying an injured employee on light duty. This all assumes that there is zero productivity from the employee & hopefully shows an improved bottom line.

I've also found that employers are more willing to implement an RTW program if they know that they're not beholden to keeping the employee in a light duty position longer than would be 'business practicable'. If the employers knows that they can provide light duty for a set period (one or two weeks), then if the employee is not better, can turn over lost time payments to the insurance carrier, they're more likely to agree to the light duty program. If the employee is out more than a couple weeks anyway, there is likely going to be some disability payment on the claim & they'll lose their ERA 70% discount anyway.

If we can show cost savings in the medium & long term on work comp premiums by implementing RTW, and they still don't want to do it, then I'd say they don't value anything other than the immediate bottom dollar & wouldn't be a fit for our agency.