6 Things to do While in NOLA for NWCDC

This year the National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference & Expo is being held in one of America’s most beloved and historical cities – New […]

5 Reasons to use Vocational Services Early

For the past 13 years, we have led the way in the claims industry with innovative and proven solutions for workers’ compensation claims. Since the […]

Living With Limits: Staying Positive While Surviving ALS

During the summer of 2014, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge took social media by storm, as millions of people across the world doused themselves, and […]

ReEmployAbility Hires Two New Executives to Support Continued Growth and Innovation

  Over the past few years, we here at ReEmployAbility have experienced tremendous growth and are showing no signs of slowing down. We are a […]

Florida Gulf Coast 500

ReEmployAbility Debuts on 2016’s Gulf Coast 500

ReEmployAbility is pleased to announce it has been recognized in Business Observer’s 2016 Gulf Coast 500 rankings. The company debuted on the exclusive list ranking number 461, […]

ReEmployAbility to Showcase Specialty Return to Work Program and Vocational Services at WCI Conference

It’s August, which means only one thing in the workers’ comp world – WCI’s Annual Workers Compensation Educational Conference is right around the corner. This […]

Getting to Know ReEmployAbility: Sherri Tillman

Every month the employees here at ReEmployAbility look forward to one day – Cupcake Day! The last Monday of each month, Client Services Manager, Sherri […]

ETT blog

6 Reasons to make the Switch to Electronic Time Tracking

Nearly a year ago we implemented an innovative new service for employers who use our Transition2Work program. Many of our clients are switching to Electronic […]

GA-with-Logo blog

New GA Workers’ Comp Change Streamlines ‘240 Procedure,’ Saving Employers Time and Money

  A recent change by the directors of the Georgia State Board will make the process of helping injured employees return to work more efficient. […]

Volunteer Blog

Making A Difference: The Benefits of Volunteering

Through the Transition2Work program, ReEmployAbility has been able to provide thousands of invaluable volunteer hours to nonprofit agencies each year. The ability to help the […]


 

6 Things to do While in NOLA for NWCDC

Posted on November 29, 2016

This year the National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference & Expo is being held in one of America’s most beloved and historical cities – New Orleans. If this is your first, or your twentieth time visiting the city, you know that there is so much that New Orleans has to offer. Here is a list of our top six things to do while you’re in New Orleans for NWCDC.

Bourbon Street

It goes without saying that Bourbon Street is synonymous with New Orleans. Located in the heart of the French Quarter, one can get lost in the ambiance as the lights hypnotize and sounds of brass bands waif through the air. Temptation draws you in, as America’s most famous party street is sure to offer something for everyone. So throw on some beads and take a stroll down Bourbon Street, you are sure to experience Mardi Gras any day of the week.

Frenchmen Street

Though Bourbon Street is most often the go-to spot for any New Orleans tourist, if you want a more authentic, more relaxed look into the NOLA life, Frenchmen Street is a must. Known as the “locals’ version of Bourbon Street,” Frenchmen is the live music and entertainment district in the Marigny neighborhood, located near the French Quarter. With the focus more on entertainment, you can really experience the city’s vibe and culture. The street encompasses everything New Orleans is.

Café Du Monde

On the edge of Jackson Square lies the original sweet spot of New Orleans. Known as the original French Market coffee stand, Café Du Monde opened in 1862 with only one thing on the menu – the beignet, the state donut of Louisiana. There are now eight locations throughout the city, but the original café is open 24 hours a day, seven days a week, so you can enjoy a chicory coffee and a beignet any time you would like.

Jackson Square

As a National Historic Landmark, Jackson Square is the perfect place to slow down and soak in the peaceful side of New Orleans. It is where visitors can wander through the timeless grounds, surrounded by art and culture as museums, galleries and restaurants line the street. It is also home to the elegant St. Louis Cathedral. Visitors can also get a mystical experience as tarot readers, gypsies, and fortune tellers are common place in the square.

Ride a Streetcar

While in New Orleans riding a streetcar is tantamount to visiting Bourbon Street – it is a must. The streetcars are a great way to give your feet a little rest and still explore all that New Orleans has to offer. There are currently six routes that explore the historic streets. So make sure you climb aboard and really get into the historic spirit.

Visit Booth 1709

Sure New Orleans has a lot to offer outside of the Convention center. But while you’re attending the National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference, make sure to stop by Booth 1709 in the main exhibit hall. Meet with us and register to win a Bose bluetooth speaker. We will be on hand to discuss Transition2Work as an employer solution for accommodating occupational and non-occupational disabilities. Find out about our programs to help reduce workers’ compensation and disability claim costs by returning injured employees to the workforce as soon as they are released to modified duty. We’re looking forward to seeing you there!

 

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5 Reasons to use Vocational Services Early

Posted on November 14, 2016

For the past 13 years, we have led the way in the claims industry with innovative and proven solutions for workers’ compensation claims. Since the beginning, vocational services have been the core of our business. We continue to use unique strategies for each claim and provide new resources and solutions for injured workers to find new opportunities that help resolve claims quickly.

Our vocational services have proven effective over the years, however, many adjusters and attorneys often struggle to determine the best time to begin the process. Unfortunately, there are some who wait until the last minute to begin the process. That decision to wait can hinder the outcome and lead to higher claims costs. Don’t wait until mediation when you’re starting to face deadlines.

Though we often recommend beginning the moment the injured worker reaches Maximum Medical Improvement (MMI), recently there have been changes to Florida law that would make it more advantageous to begin well before that.

In April, during the case of Castellanos v. Next Door, the court ruled that the state’s attorney-fee caps in the workers’ compensation law’s legal fee schedule were unconstitutional, saying it was a violation of due process. In June, there was a second significant case, Westphal v. City of St. Petersburg case, in which the court ruled that the 104 week limitation on all forms of temporary indemnity is unconstitutional and increased the statutory cap for indemnity to 260 weeks, or five years. These rulings could mean more costs for employers and carriers.

Because every case is different, here are five reasons why you should utilize vocational services long before the injured worker reaches MMI:

Allows time to obtain information on medical restrictions

In some cases, the physical restrictions may be unknown or unclear. Earlier referral allows sufficient time to communicate with the treating physicians to clarify the restrictions so placement services are appropriate for the individual.

An awareness of all barriers

Beginning with a reemployment assessment provides an opportunity to explore the injured worker’s education, work experience, and transferable skills, in conjunction with medical limitations. Based upon the individual’s capabilities and/or limitations, the appropriate course for action can be determined for the case.

Provide opportunities for personal development

Understanding the potential barriers involved in return to work gives us the ability to find the appropriate resources for each injured worker. This may include educational and/or retraining opportunities.

Ample time to prepare for litigation

Because the Permanent Total Disability (PTD) petition comes right on the heels of MMI, there is often little time to take all of the proper steps to fully prepare for trial. Early referral allows sufficient time to obtain comprehensive vocational services.

Cost savings

This is a no brainer. With the new law extending the indemnity time from 104 weeks to 260, this is undoubtedly going to incur more costs due to greater claim duration. Starting the vocational process earlier is proactive and can help resolve the claim faster.

 

Contact ReEmployAbility to learn more about how we can help your injured workers get back to work faster! Call toll free: 1-866-663-9880 or email: info@reemployability.com.

 

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Living With Limits: Staying Positive While Surviving ALS

Posted on November 7, 2016

During the summer of 2014, the ALS Ice Bucket Challenge took social media by storm, as millions of people across the world doused themselves, and each other, with buckets of ice water. Though there were some who may have associated the challenge as a way to goof off or participate in a new trend, the real goal behind the challenge was to raise awareness about Amyotrophic Lateral Sclerosis (ALS).

ALS, also known to many as Lou Gehrig’s disease, is a progressive neurodegenerative disease that affects nerve cells in the brain and the spinal cord. It is a debilitating disease, which leads to paralysis, respiratory failure, and eventually death. What is worse – there is no cure.

The ALS Association estimates that there are about 30,000 Americans currently living with ALS, and on average, there are more than 5,600 people diagnosed a year.

Diane’s Story

In November 2015, Diane Mummaw, a friend and industry colleague of ReEmployAbility, was diagnosed with ALS.

“When I was diagnosed, I knew very little about the disease,” Diane said. “Of course, I was aware of the Ice Bucket Challenge, but very little beyond that.”

The more Diane learned, the more she realized that this disease will not only affect her, but it will have an impactful and lasting effect on her family and friends as well.

Diane says she is fortunate to be surrounded by such a great support system. (From left to right: her son, Mike; daughter-in-law, Britney; Diane; daughter, Samantha)

Diane says she is fortunate to be surrounded by such a great support system.
(From left to right: Diane’s son, Mike; daughter-in-law, Britney; Diane; and daughter, Samantha)

Preparing for What Lies Ahead

“There is nothing that can really prepare you for what lies ahead,” she said. “There are so many things you need to consider when you begin this journey, and no one’s journey is ever the same. This disease has a unique effect on everyone. But I did realize that eventually, I will have to rely heavily on my family to get through this.”

Because this disease eventually leads to paralysis, Diane knew that she would have to be proactive and start renovating her home and making the proper arrangements to make that transition easier.

“My home renovations are in full swing and I’m staying with my son and daughter-in-law during the chaos,” she said.  “I expect my home to be completed in the next two weeks and I’m very excited by all that is being done.”

Renovations include a bathroom expansion with a zero entry shower, the widening of doorways inside and out, and new flooring throughout her house.

Diane has been very fortunate as her progression has been – what her neurologist has claimed to be – unusually slow. The disease often leads to rapid nerve and muscle loss.

“I am very fortunate to report I have only suffered some minor additional loss to my arm and hand strength,” she said. “I continue to deal with fatigue, but I’m learning to manage it.”

Though she is strong enough to continue working for now, she will go on disability in January.

“Once I go on disability, it will give me an opportunity to spend more time with my family and dedicate more time to my advocacy,” she said.

Fighting for Awareness

Since her diagnosis, Diane has not only spent her time finding out all that she can about her disease, she has also devoted her time to becoming an ALS Advocate and spreading awareness about ALS. This year, Diane traveled to Washington, DC with her son and other advocates for the National ALS Advocacy Day and Public Policy Conference. There she shared her story with Congress and learned about the latest policies and initiatives.

“It was important for me to make this trip,” Diane said. “You never know how this disease will affect you, or how quickly. I am glad I went. Not only did it give me an opportunity to hear other stories, it was a way for me to connect my story with what is happening in Washington.”

According to the ALS Association’s website, the policy issues included legislation to waive the five-month waiting period for Social Security Disability benefits for people living with ALS and further support of the Dormant Therapies Act of 2014, which provides incentives to drug makers to develop medications that may not be profitable. She said that the trip was eye-opening and she is looking forward to heading back to Washington in 2017.

Not only is the disease a physical burden for those diagnosed, the disease also carries a hefty financial burden. Diane said that the projected annual cost for a patient is $75,000, much to which is paid out of pocket, as many of the medical costs associated with the disease are not covered by insurance.

How You Can Help

In an effort to help Diane with the high cost of the disease, her friends and family set up a Go Fund Me page. GoFundMe is a crowdfunding platform that allows people to raise money.

“I am extremely fortunate to be surrounded by such an amazing support system,” she said. “Their continual support and love is really what is helping me get through this with such optimism and hope. I am blessed to have them in my life.”

Her Go Fund Me page has currently raised over $30,000. Her family and friends have also created a team to participate in the Walk to Defeat ALS that will be held in Orlando on March 12, 2017. You can join Diane’s team or donate here. All funds raised for the walk will go to the ALS Association.

Leaving a Legacy of Hope

For over 20 years, Diane has been running Free State Staffing, providing adjusters career opportunities within the insurance industry. She is currently grooming her son, Mike, to take over her role when she retires and acts as a consultant for the company.

In January, Free State Staffing will host a legacy party in her honor. It is an opportunity for everyone to pay tribute to Diane and to express the contribution she has made in their life.

Two people that will be in attendance is ReEmployAbility Co-founders, Debra Livingston and Frances Ford. Both have known Diane for over 20 years, and as they reflect over their time spent with her, they both expressed admiration of her inspirational business acumen, her grace, and her upbeat, positive attitude.

“Diane’s spirit has always been filled with such grace and optimism,” Debra said. “It is amazing that she hasn’t lost any of that through such a life-changing event. If anything, it has only enhanced those qualities and shed light on her strength and perseverance as well.”

Frances added, “Those qualities will help her not only in her battle with the disease, but with all of her advocacy initiatives as well. She is intelligent, driven, and is a fighter. There is no doubt that she will do amazing work, not only in her own journey, but helping others through theirs as well.”

Diane’s fight, advocacy, and optimism has been inspirational. Being diagnosed with a terminal, debilitating disease could – understandably – possibly lead to feelings of hopelessness. For Diane, it has had the adverse effect. She remains optimistic, grateful, and blessed.

“I have always loved the quote, ‘It is what it is…,’” she said. “I have always found it interesting that the rest of the quote is, ‘…because something is not as it should be.’ I think it perfectly applies to how I look at this disease. Something is not right but I can only deal with what I have each day!  I’m grateful all the time that the disease seems to be progressing slowly for me.  Many of the ALS community are not so lucky.”

 

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ReEmployAbility Hires Two New Executives to Support Continued Growth and Innovation

Posted on September 28, 2016

We would like to welcome Victoria Giuliani(left) and Kristine De Jesus to the team.

 

Over the past few years, we here at ReEmployAbility have experienced tremendous growth and are showing no signs of slowing down. We are a customer focused company, and take pride in the customer service standards we have set and maintained throughout the years. As we continue to grow, it is extremely important that we remain dedicated on customer satisfaction.

That is why we are excited to announce two additions to our team — a new Director of Sales and a Director of Quality Assurance. Bringing in this talent in these two new positions will help us stay consistent with our mission and our values as an organization.

Kristine De Jesus joins our team as Director of Quality Assurance. She brings over 10 years of experience and expertise in strategic business planning, training and development, project management, and organizational transformation.

“We are very pleased to welcome Kristine to our staff,” Co-Founder Debra Livingston said. “And we’re excited to add this new role to our company. Quality Assurance is critical to the customer. Because we have seen such tremendous growth and continue on that trajectory, it becomes increasingly important for our process to be efficient and maintain that customer focus. Kristine’s extensive team-building and project management experience is sure to enhance our leadership team.”

As Director of Quality Assurance, De Jesus will establish a corporate quality assurance system that promotes customer satisfaction and that positively impacts the financial performance of ReEmployAbility.

“As we continue to grow, our internal needs have changed,” Co-Founder Frances Ford said. “In order to provide the high level of customer satisfaction our clients have come to expect, Kristine will help us look at our overall internal operation, make sure we have sufficient staffing needs and have the right people, efficiently placed so that we can continue to offer the value for our services.”

Before joining ReEmployAbility, De Jesus was the Vice President of Global Workforce Management for Citibank. She has a distinguished career and a proven record of achieving strategic success.

“It feels great to be a part of an organization that helps so many people in the community and paves the way for an injured worker to make a major comeback after a minor setback,” De Jesus said. “I look forward to bringing my experience and breadth of knowledge to ReEmployAbility and being a part of its growth. I can’t wait to learn with everyone.”

Victoria Giuliani, our new Director of Sales, brings her over 25 years of retail executive management experience and client service expertise to the company.

“We are so excited to welcome Victoria to the team,” Co-Founder Debra Livingston said. “Bringing in a Director of Sales allows us to have a more focused approach to account management. Customer service and filling the needs of our clients is one of our highest priorities. With Victoria’s help, we can extend our reach as an organization and focus on customer service and filling the needs of those clients. This includes our non-profit partners. Getting back to not only our customer’s needs, but knowing that our services help the community as well.”

As Director of Sales, Giuliani will recruit, train, and develop the company’s sales and support team. She will also help determine company go-to-market strategies and spearhead major initiatives with existing clients and new prospects.

Before joining ReEmployAbility, Giuliani was the Vice President of Retail for J.Jill and before that she was the Vice President of Store Operations and Brand Presentation for Lane Bryant.  She has a notable career within the retail industry and an extensive record of successfully shaping and directing all strategies required to achieve company goals.

“I am really grateful to have joined the ReEmployAbility team,” Giuliani said. “It is exciting to join a company that has set the standard in the industry and is growing at such a rapid, healthy pace. It is a pleasure to work with such talented people who are focused on providing such a great service to the community. I look forward to working with everyone and I am excited about the opportunities that lie ahead.”

Both Kristine and Victoria are sure to become great assets for our team and our clients. Their combined experience will not only benefit customer service for our current clients, but also benefit continued business development.

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ReEmployAbility Debuts on 2016’s Gulf Coast 500

Posted on September 26, 2016

Florida Gulf Coast 500

ReEmployAbility is pleased to announce it has been recognized in Business Observer’s 2016 Gulf Coast 500 rankings. The company debuted on the exclusive list ranking number 461, based on a revenue growth rate of 43.8% in 2015.

“It is an honor to be recognized as one of the fastest growing companies in the Florida Gulf Coast region,” said company co-founder, Debra Livingston. “Our overall growth as a company can be attributed to the success of our vocational services and Transition2Work program. We started our business based on a shared passion for creating positive outcomes for injured workers. It is a pleasure to work with employers who share our philosophy and are willing to seek creative solutions to provide the best return-to-work options for their employees and help make a difference in the community. The results of the program are truly exceptional, and I am thankful we have made such a positive impact not only on the Gulf Coast, but throughout Florida, and nationwide.”

Business Observer’s Gulf Coast 500 is a comprehensive list that ranks the largest 500 companies from nine Florida counties from Polk to Collier, by revenue. In addition to the list, the Gulf Coast 500 also features strategies and stories of the region’s largest companies, and bits of information you may not know about them.

 

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ReEmployAbility to Showcase Specialty Return to Work Program and Vocational Services at WCI Conference

Posted on August 8, 2016

It’s August, which means only one thing in the workers’ comp world – WCI’s Annual Workers Compensation Educational Conference is right around the corner.

This marks the thirteenth conference in which we will be at the at the conference exhibition center to showcase our exclusive return to work program, Transition2Work®, and vocational services to employers and workers’ compensation industry professionals.

“We love the Florida conference, we can’t wait to connect with longtime friends and colleagues,” Co-owner Frances Ford said. “And this is an exciting year for vocational and return to work services given the significance of the recent Florida Supreme Court decisions.”

There have been big changes shaking up the industry, due to two Florida Supreme Court rulings. In April, during the case of Castellanos v. Next Door, the court ruled that the state’s attorney-fee caps in the workers’ compensation law’s legal fee schedule was unconstitutional, saying it was a violation of due process. In June, there was a second significant case, in which during the Westphal v. City of St. Petersburg case, the court ruled that the 104 week limitation on all forms of temporary indemnity is unconstitutional and increased the statutory cap for indemnity to 260 weeks, or five years.

Every day Florida is in the news warning, debating, and arguing over the effects of the Supreme Court case rulings. These two decisions have led to the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) to propose a 19.6 percent rate increase for new and renewal workers’ compensation policies.

Businesses and insurance companies are now worrying about rising claim costs. The need to cut workers’ comp costs and return the injured worker back into the workforce is now critical. Companies can no longer be complacent during the process; they need to become more proactive. Now, more than ever, is a great time for conference attendees to learn about our vocational services.

We started our business specializing in vocational services, and for over a decade we have become Florida’s leading provider of vocational services.

“We are the ones that everyone turns to,” Frances said. “Everyone knows that we are the tried and true resource and they have confidence in our service that we will get injured workers back to work as quickly and cost efficiently as possible.”

Attending the WCI conference is more than exhibiting our services, for Co-owners Frances and Debra Livingston, it is a way to reconnect with those who have been in the industry with them for the past 25 years.

“It’s almost like homecoming week,” Debra said. “We get to see those who we have worked with very closely and who have grown in the industry with us over the years. It’s really nice to see people who you haven’t seen in a very long time and to reminisce with them about the good old days.”

If you are attending the 71st Annual Workers Compensation Educational Conference, you don’t want to miss all of the great activities at the ReEmployAbility booth! Stop by booth #309 in the main exhibit hall for some exciting opportunities:

  • Picture yourself playing your favorite game or sport – An experienced caricature artist from Cartoon You Caricatures will be available to quickly sketch live digital drawings of booth visitors!
  • Register to win a new Fitbit Charge HR – Get your heartrate going, as all visitors can register in our drawing for a chance to win a brand new Fitbit Charge HR.
  • Learn about our specialty Return-to-Work program – For employees with occupational or non-occupational disabilities, offsite transitional duty with nonprofit agencies can be a viable option when your company is unable to accommodate employees’ disabilities onsite.
  • Explore the many benefits of our Vocational Services – For the past 13 years, we have led the way in the claims industry with innovative and proven solutions for workers’ compensation cases. We use direct vocational strategies for each claim – finding jobs for injured employees and getting them back to work faster. This allows us to find employment opportunities that help to resolve all claims.

 

Visit with our team to find out how our services can benefit your Return-to-Work program.

Interested in scheduling a meeting with our team to discuss your Return-to-Work program needs? Contact our Client Services team: 1(866) 663-9880.

 

We can’t wait to see you at WCI ’16, August 22 – 24!

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Getting to Know ReEmployAbility: Sherri Tillman

Posted on July 25, 2016

Every month the employees here at ReEmployAbility look forward to one day – Cupcake Day! The last Monday of each month, Client Services Manager, Sherri Tillman brings in four dozen of her delicious homemade cupcakes to celebrate birthdays held during that month.

It is a tradition that Sherri has done for over five years and one that has officially earned her the title of, “Cupcake Queen.”

She said she is always looking for new recipes to surprise the group with, but there are definitely favorites. The two most requested cupcakes are Banana Pudding and Strawberry.

Sherri is a baker at heart and even when it is not Cupcake Day, she will randomly bring in a treat that is sure to satisfy any sweet tooth.

Did you enjoy the video? Subscribe to our blog for future highlights of the employees of ReEmployAbility and all of their hidden talents.

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6 Reasons to make the Switch to Electronic Time Tracking

Posted on July 11, 2016

ETT blog

Nearly a year ago we implemented an innovative new service for employers who use our Transition2Work program. Many of our clients are switching to Electronic Time Tracking and have found that it is an easier way to track employees who are working off-site on modified duty.

If you have not made the switch yet, here are six reasons why you should:

 

Never wait for timesheets

When an employer is dealing with paper timesheets, they may find themselves playing the waiting game. From fax transmission errors to employees forgetting to send sheets in, there are many factors that can contribute to delays. Electronic Time Tracking is immediate and puts an end to the wait. Employers have 24/7 real-time online access to each employee’s time records.

Errors are easier to spot and correct

Around the clock access allows employers to catch any errors that may occur immediately instead of waiting up to a week to spot them on a paper submission. If any errors are spotted, the employer can make appropriate changes right there on the spot.

Verification employee is on site

Electronic Time Tracking not only has Caller ID, it also has a sophisticated voice verification technology that can validate an employee’s location while working off-site. The employee is instructed to call from a land line and not a mobile phone. Clients can also sign up for email and text alerts, giving immediate assurance that the employee is at the designated location.

Run detailed reports

Various summary and detail views for time records are available to provide the desired level of specification. Information reported includes: time in/out for each date, job and activity code, total time worked for each shift, telephone number and Caller ID description for the phone number used. Reports can easily be printed, exported as spreadsheets, and shared with your team.

Integrate into most payroll software

Payroll deadlines are easily met with this cutting edge technology, as the program integrates easily with most popular payroll software and services. Employers are able to access in-depth reports right on the site, saving them time in and making the entire process the more efficient option.

User friendly

The process for clocking in and out is quick and easy. We include step-by-step instructions and convenient wallet cards to each employee. When employees call in, the system gives them easy to follow prompts. The online tracking is just as simple for the employer and allows each client a look at all employees utilizing the program at once.

 

Interested in using Electronic Time Tracking?
Signing up for Electronic Time Tracking is simple. Contact one of our Client Services Managers today.
Toll free: (866) 663-9880 or email ClientServicesTeam@reemployability.com

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New GA Workers’ Comp Change Streamlines ‘240 Procedure,’ Saving Employers Time and Money

Posted on July 1, 2016

GA-with-Logo blog

 

A recent change by the directors of the Georgia State Board will make the process of helping injured employees return to work more efficient.

Summary of Change

The Georgia State Board revised Board Rule 200.2; as of Jan. 1, the revision will now allow employers to “utilize qualified medical case managers to provide telephonic or field medical case management services.”  This allows a case manager an opportunity to communicate with the doctor directly during the “240 procedure.” The case manager will also be allowed to communicate directly with the injured employee if permission is given by the claimant.

Background

Implemented in 2002, Board Rule 240 and the “240 procedure” was created as a way to allow injured employees a way to transition back to work. The intended goal was to allow the employer to “unilaterally suspend income benefits upon the employee’s return to work or refusal to accept a properly offered suitable job.”

Board Rule 200.2 focuses on the process of identifying the job duties and physical limitations of the injured employee found during the “240 procedure.” The procedure benefits the employees because they will know their limitations and it benefits the employer because the injured employee will not be able to justify refusal to work that has been plausibly reviewed. The procedure is usually handled by case manager, individuals who provide services to injured employees to help them recover from their injuries.

 

Impact on Return-to-Work

So how will this benefit the employer? Before January 1, only the employer or claims professional could have direct contact with the doctor during the “240 Procedure.” This made the process slower, which accrued additional costs. The new rule allows the case manager to assist with the approval of light duty job descriptions and communicate directly with the doctor. In many cases this will be useful in obtaining information from the doctors more quickly.  It will also allow the employer or insurer to obtain faster physician approval of light duty jobs as well.

The new implementation along with ReEmployAbility’s return-to-work program, Transition2Work, means the injured employee can transition back to work quickly. It also helps the employer retain skilled employees, saves the company money by reducing the duration of the claim, and it helps the community thrive.

 

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Making A Difference: The Benefits of Volunteering

Posted on April 20, 2016

Through the Transition2Work program, ReEmployAbility has been able to provide thousands of invaluable volunteer hours to nonprofit agencies each year. The ability to help the community motivates the dedicated team to work hard every day.

Nonprofit Impact

The foundation of ReEmployAbility is centered on the purpose of giving back and service to the community. Since its opening in 2003, ReEmployAbility has partnered with over 30,000 nonprofit organizations nationwide, ranging from large organizations like Habitat for Humanity to small, local organizations such as food pantries and libraries.

“We love the ReEmployAbility Program,” said Jeanine W., General Manager of the Children’s Boutique at Steven’s Hope. “The volunteers that come to us from ReEmployAbility are well skilled individuals who arrive daily with a friendly, helpful attitude. Their work productivity is excellent and enables us to improve our profitability and ultimately assist more families with seriously ill or injured children. Our volunteers form friendships together and it makes us very happy to see them improve from their injury and return back to work. We are very grateful for our partnership with ReEmployAbility!”

Over the past 13 years, more than 2.8 million volunteer hours have been assigned through the Transition2Work program. Volunteers are able to work safely within their restrictions as they continue to practice or learn new skills.

Top 5 Benefits of Volunteering

Not only is volunteering beneficial to the community, but many volunteers experience benefits as well. Research indicates there are many mental and physical health benefits to volunteering. Programs such as Transition2Work that place injured workers in volunteer assignments with nonprofit organizations can help achieve positive outcomes and provide these benefits for aiding recovery.

  • Combat Depression: Often when injured workers spend a lot of time at home while nursing an injury, the lack of socializing could really pay a toll on mental health. Studies show that social isolation is a key factor of depression. According to an article by the Corporation for National & Community Service, volunteering can improve functional ability and lowers rates of depression.
    Volunteering keeps you in regular contact with others and within a positive atmosphere, which could help combat the risk of social isolation.
  • Provides Sense of Purpose: Volunteering can positively influence an injured workers’ sense of purpose, accomplishment, and self‐worth as well as increase the volunteers’ social network, help to avoid isolation, and can buffer stress. Injured workers run the risk of entering a slump where they feel they are not contributing as much as they once were. They can get their mind off of their own worries by volunteering and earning a sense of purpose by helping others.
  • Improved Physical Health and Speedy Recovery: Research has proven that volunteers tend to have greater life satisfaction and better physical health than those who do not volunteer. A study by United Healthcare and VolunteerMatch shows the majority of those who volunteer (93%) reported that volunteering keeps them physically active and (84%) said it improves their physical health. Additionally, most participants (73%) cite volunteering lowers stress levels. This can lead to quicker recovery and the injured worker to return to work faster.
  • Beneficial to Those Experiencing Chronic Pain: Many who sustain an injury that causes chronic pain may feel hopeless while in recovery. However, a study by Arnstein et al (2002) exploring the benefits of volunteering for those with chronic pain showed volunteers with chronic pain saw a decrease in pain intensity and levels of disability and depression.
  • Development of New Skills and Experience: Not only can volunteering help with social and relationship skills, but it can also provide an opportunity to advance current labor skills and introduce injured workers to new skills that can be beneficial to their pre-injury employer. Volunteers are often in a new environment, exposed to new trades and are challenged and exposed to new tasks.

 

Interested In Becoming A Nonprofit Partner?

Want to make a difference in the life of an injured worker? Help someone in your area continue to earn a paycheck while volunteering for your organization! Get the extra help you need, and provide the healing opportunity of a lifetime! Contact ReEmployAbility today to learn more about the benefits of joining ReEmployAbility’s national nonprofit network and be among the first to learn of a new volunteer in your area.

 

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