Wednesday, July 1, 2020

Tid-bits of Hypocrisy (the first in a series about proposed reform in workers comp)

The first tid-bit of hypocrisy we'll discuss is paper size. Financial negotiations between Workers Compensation physicians represented by the California Society of Industrial Medicine and Surgery (CSIMS) and the California Division of Workers Compensation (DWC) focused on this issue.

The reason is that the doctors wanted a certain level of minimum reimbursement circa $3.00 per page whereas the insurance industry, in this case spoken for by DWC, wanted to pay less, in short, while their alleged aim was supposedly to update the fee schedule to enable enhanced recruiting of physicians, the insurance companies were not wild with joy about this avowed objective. Nonetheless, it was the physicians' understanding after stakeholder negotiations between CSIMS and DWC that a joint stakeholder agreement had been reached on a pay-for-page basis.

Not quite. During the negotiations CSIMS envisioned standard size pages measuring 8.5 x 11  inches. The doctors for whom CSIMS was negotiating were consequently bowled over when DWC let it be known that the DWC version of a page would measure 8.5 x 14 inches.

In essence the DWC recommendation amounts to an increase in insurance company income, denial of a modest raise for physicians, and a reduction in services for injured workers.

We understand that DWC wants to hear what the parties and the public think about this proposal and others (see newsletters to follow) --  if you have an opinion make it known to (10 July 2020 is the cutoff date). You should also copy,,, your assembly representatives and state senators. 

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