The WSIA Weekly, 3.11.16

Legislature fails to complete work on time; goes into special session for budget
Yesterday marked the end of this year’s 60-day legislative session, a session notable for its lack of any particular activity on much of anything, including workers’ compensation and workplace safety policy. Shortly after the Legislature’s adjournment last night, Governor Jay Inslee called a 30-day special session to continue negotiating differences on the state’s supplemental operating budget. It remains to be resolved whether any final budget will contain directives for a Labor & Industries pilot program for outside management of catastrophic injury claims and task force on Independent Medical Examination issues.   

Look forward to seeing members next week at Spring Conference
There’s still room for a few more registrations for next Thursday’s Spring Conference – “The Doctor is In” – at the Embassy Suites Hotel in Bellevue. This is a fantastic agenda for those interested in learning more about the medical conditions that drive complex workers’ comp claims, and solutions for working through them. We look forward to seeing nearly 100 of our members and friends there! Agenda & last minute registrations here.

Labor & Industries issues update on new electronic data collection system
Earlier today, the Department of Labor & Industries released a communication to the self-insured community explaining its current work on the Electronic Data Interchange (EDI), which will become a component of the new Self-Insurance Risk Analysis System (SIRAS) under development as part of the new audit reform model. Working with WSIA’s Liaison Committee, Audit Reform Committee, and other major stakeholders, the Department has decided to implement a medical data tracking system now, and continue to use SIEDRS to track claims data until a future phase of the project. Read more about it here.

New Wage Calculation Workshop added to calendar of events
Upon considerable request from members to offer training on Washington’s difficult wage calculation structure, we have developed, scheduled, and just announced this week a new Wage Calculation Workshop to be held April 21st in Gig Harbor. The top five errors from employers who have undergone Tier 1 pilot audits have all been common wage calculation issues. We’ve pulled together some experts from inside and outside the Department to train on getting wages right. Learn more about the event and register here. 

March Liaison Committee report up on the website
WSIA’s Liaison Committee met with Labor & Industries’ self-insurance management on March 3rd, discussing the aforementioned Medical EDI system, reporting issues related to Kept-on-Salary (KOS) claims, and heard about new hires and self-insured employer certifications. The report and performance tracking handouts are available on our liaison committee webpage here (member login req’d). Remember, the Liaison Committee is your immediate voice for claims handling or department policy/management concerns; contact Kris Tefft anytime you would like to raise an issue.

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