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Employers Must Post Annual Work-Related Injury and Illness Summary

The California Department of Industrial Relations’ Division of Occupational Safety and Health (DIR/DOSH), also known as Cal/OSHA, is providing 2013’s notification to all employers to post the annual summary of all work-related injuries and illnesses (Form 300A). The form must be posted at their place of business from February 1 through April 30.

The Form 300A is available for free download on DIR’s website. The form is a required workplace posting so that employees may have the opportunity to review any injury or illness that took place at their worksite in the prior year. Former employees and their representatives have a right to review the form as well. The form must be posted in a visible and easily-accessible area.

“Transparency and accountability are very important aspects of the employer-employee relationship,” said Cal/OSHA Chief Ellen Widess. “This form gives employees, former employees and their representatives access to worksite injury and illness data. Full and accurate reporting of injuries and illnesses is vital to understanding hazards in the workplace. It is also a good tool to determine where additional safety and health measures are needed.”

Employers are required to fill out and post the Form 300A every year, even if no workplace injuries occurred. Information that must be disclosed on the form includes total number of cases with days away from work, total number of days injured or sick employees spent away from work, and the different types of injury or illness suffered.

Employers who would like more information on their posting requirements or who would like more information on how to reduce workplace injuries and illnesses are encouraged to visit the DIR Employer Information page. In addition, if an employer would like to speak with a Cal/OSHA consultant, free assessments are available to California businesses by calling the Cal/OSHA Consultation Program 1-800-963-9424.

Employees with work-related questions or complaints can call the California Workers’ Information Hotline at 1-866-924-9757.

Cal/OSHA Issues Chevron Record $1 Million Fine

California safety officials ordered Chevron Corp. to pay a record-high fine of nearly $1 million for safety violations that led to a massive fire last summer at a refinery in the San Francisco Bay Area.

According to the report in the Los Angeles Times, after the Aug. 6 explosion at Chevron’s facility in Richmond, Calif., an emergency telephone network advised tens of thousands of people in that city to stay indoors behind closed doors and windows to avoid breathing potentially dangerous sulfuric acid and nitrogen dioxide fumes. About 200 local residents sought medical help, complaining of respiratory problems. In addition, Chevron reported that one of its employees suffered a minor injury.

Cal-OSHA said Wednesday that its investigation of the explosion at a leaking crude refining unit, among other things, showed that Chevron did not follow safety recommendations made by its inspectors in 2002 to replace a corroded pipe that subsequently ruptured and fueled the fire. The company also failed to follow emergency shutdown procedures after the leak was found the day of the fire, the state said.

In all, the state Division of Occupational Safety and Health issued 25 citations against California’s biggest oil company, including 11 “willful serious” and 12 lesser “serious” violations related to the blaze, the state said. The $963,200 fine is the highest in Cal-OSHA history, the agency said.

“Ensuring worker safety is the employer’s responsibility,” said Christine Baker, director of the state Department of Industrial Relations, which oversees Cal-OSHA. “Refineries must take the steps needed to prevent incidents like the August Chevron fire. Failure to do so can pose great dangers to workers, surrounding communities and the environment.”

Chevron said it intends to appeal some of the citations. “Chevron takes our commitment to safe operations seriously,” the San Ramon, Calif., company said in a statement. “Although we acknowledge that we failed to live up to our own expectations in this incident, we do not agree with several of the Cal-OSHA findings and its characterization of some of the alleged violations as ‘willful.'”

The company reported that since the fire it has taken a number of corrective actions to enhance safety, mechanical integrity and management oversight at the third-largest refinery in California, which processes 245,000 barrels of crude oil a day. The damaged refining unit is being repaired and should be back in operation by the end of March, Chevron said.

Chevron’s laxity endangered its neighbors, said state Assemblywoman Nancy Skinner (D-Berkeley), who represents the Richmond area. “The community expects more and demands more of Chevron,” she said. “Chevron needs to step up to the plate.”

George Burr New VP of Crum and Forster in Orange County

Crum and Forster named George Burr vice president, California Workers’ Compensation Claims.

Burr will manage the West Coast workers’ compensation claims office located in Orange County, Calif.

Burr brings extensive workers’ compensation claims experience to Crum and Forster, most recently serving as vice president, Claims Operations for Seabright Insurance Company with responsibility for their Western Claims Division.

Burr began his insurance career as a workers’ compensation claims adjuster with Safeco Insurance, and subsequently held a number of management roles at Safeco including responsibility for field and home office workers’ compensation claim technical functions.

Burr reports to Stephen Eisenmann, senior vice president, Claims. Mr. Eisenmann commented: “We are excited to have someone with George’s knowledge and experience in workers’ compensation claims heading up our West Coast claims operation. George is a welcome addition to the claims management team as he shares C&F’s proactive claim management philosophy of early exposure recognition and high customer service standards.”

Court of Appeal Rules that Police Officer 4850 Pay is Part of 104 Week Cap

Bryan Knittel injured his knee in 2009 while working as an Alameda County Deputy Sheriff. Knittel was unable to perform his duties after the injury, and the County of Alameda (County) paid disability benefits from the date of his injury.

He was classified as temporarily disabled for over two years. For the first year Knittel was disabled, the County paid him benefits pursuant to Labor Code section 4850. Under that section, public safety officers who are disabled in the course of their duties are entitled to a leave of absence without loss of salary for up to one year. After the first year passed, the County paid Knittel “regular” temporary disability indemnity benefits for another year. The County then ceased to pay temporary disability indemnity, citing the 104-week limit on aggregate disability payments for an injury causing temporary disability. (Labor Code 4656, subd. (c)(2).).

Knittel disputed the County’s interpretation of the law and requested a hearing before the Workers’ Compensation Appeals Board (WCAB). At the hearing, the workers’ compensation judge (WCJ) assigned to the matter agreed with Knittel, concluding section 4850 benefits do not “count toward the two-year limitation under Section 4656.” The County filed a petition for reconsideration. The WCAB denied the petition in an order that merely adopted the reasons stated by the WCJ in his report. The County then filed a petition for review. The Court of Appeal in the published opinion of County of Alameda v WCAB and Bryan Knittel reversed the WCAB and remanded the case for further proceedings.

The Court noted that there have not been any prior decisions have interpreted the statutory language of Labor Code 4656, subd. (c)(2) at issue in this appeal.

There is a special benefit for injured public safety officers. Pursuant to section 4850, eligible public safety officers who become disabled while performing their duties are entitled to a one-year leave of absence without loss of salary “in lieu of temporary disability payments” for up to one year. If the disability continues beyond one year, the officer is entitled to an unpaid leave of absence and whatever other benefits that might be available under the workers’ compensation law.

In 2004, as part of a comprehensive reform of the workers’ compensation law, the Legislature enacted a 104-week limit on disability payments for an injury causing temporary disability. The law currently (and at the time Knittel was injured) provides: “Aggregate disability payments for a single injury occurring on or after January 1, 2008, causing temporary disability shall not extend for more than 104 compensable weeks within a period of five years from the date of injury.” (§ 4656, subd. (c)(2).). The question here is the meaning of “[a]ggregate disability payments.” The Labor Code does not define the phrase. The County argued that the phrase also encompasses other disability payments for injuries causing temporary disability, including the salary continuation benefit payable to public safety officers pursuant to section 4850.

The Court of Appeal concluded that “The County’s arguments are persuasive. If section 4850 payments are workers’ compensation benefits, then they are part of the “aggregate” of disability payments when they are paid for an injury causing temporary disability. Knittel received an aggregate of two types of workers’ compensation benefits for his temporary disability: section 4850 salary continuation benefits and temporary disability indemnity. Pursuant to section 4656, subdivision (c)(2), Knittel was entitled to a total of 104 weeks of those combined disability benefits, and he received 52 weeks of section 4850 benefits and 52 weeks of temporary disability indemnity.”The reasoning employed by the WCJ to reach the conclusion that section 4850 benefits are not included in aggregate disability payments is unconvincing.”

The current form of the 104-week limit, subdivision (c)(2) of section 4656, was added by the Legislature in 2007. “Ultimately we agree with the County that the Legislature expressed its intent in the plain language of section 4656, subdivision (c)(2). Given the Legislature’s choice of the words “[a]ggregate disability payments,” we think it is clear that section 4850 benefits paid for an injury causing temporary disability must count toward the 104-week limit absent a specific exclusion. Our conclusion is bolstered by the fact that when the Legislature added subdivision (c)(2), the case authority holding section 4850 payments are workers’ compensation benefits was long standing and well established.”

“It appears the Legislature tried to reach a compromise with subdivision (c)(2) of section 4656 – a year of enhanced benefits for public safety officers under section 4850 followed by a year of temporary disability indemnity. To the extent the law is not working or the compromise is unfair, the parties should bring their concerns to the attention of the Legislature.”

Court of Appeal Rules Against Industrial Carrier In Subrogation Case

Bernardino Mejia-Gutierrez began working for AC Square in 2001. AC Square was hired by Comcast to install, maintain, repair, and replace cable utility lines (drop lines), which run from a utility pole to a customer’s building. On the day of his accident, Mejia-Gutierrez was at the jobsite and had already determined that he would use a ladder rather than a bucket truck to do the job To replace the drop line, Mejia-Gutierrez hung his ladder from the mid-span wire. After he ascended the ladder, the wire he was going to replace snapped where there was a knot in it, which made the ladder rock back and forth. Then another wire, which was attached to an adjacent house, snapped, which made the ladder rock even more. Mejia-Gutierrez lost his balance and fell some 26 feet to the ground. As a result of the injuries he sustained in the fall, Mejia-Gutierrez received workers’ compensation benefits from Seabright Insurance Company..

Seabright Insurance Company intervened in a negligence action brought by Bernardino Mejia-Gutierrez and his wife Elvira Vasquez against Comcast of California III, Inc. for on-the-job injuries Mejia-Gutierrez sustained while working for AC Square, a cable company hired as a subcontractor by Comcast. On March 18, 2010, Vasquez dismissed her claim and, on April 5, 2011, Mejia-Gutierrez dismissed his claim with prejudice. At that point, Seabright was the only remaining plaintiff in the case.

On April 13, 2011, Comcast filed a motion for summary judgment. On June 12, 2011, the trial court granted Comcast’s summary judgment motion, ruling that Seabright had not raised a triable issue of material fact as to Comcast “either having negligently exercised retained control, or having breached a relevant non-delegable duty.” Seabright appealed the trial court’s grant of summary judgment in favor of Comcast. The Court of Appeal sustained the judgment in favor of Comcast in the unpublished decision of Bernardo Mejia-Gutierrez v Comcast of California.

Under the peculiar risk doctrine, a person who hires an independent contractor to perform work that is inherently dangerous can be held liable for tort damages when the contractor’s negligent performance of the work causes injuries to others. In Privette v. Superior Court (1993) 5 Cal.4th 689, 691, the California Supreme Court for the first time addressed the potential conflict between the peculiar risk doctrine, as applied in favor of the contractor’s employees, and the system of workers’ compensation. “When an employee of the independent contractor hired to do dangerous work suffers a work-related injury, the employee is entitled to recovery under the state’s workers’ compensation system. That statutory scheme, which affords compensation regardless of fault, advances the same policies that underlie the doctrine of peculiar risk. Thus, when the contractor’s failure to provide safe working conditions results in injury to the contractor’s employee, additional recovery from the person who hired the contractor – a nonnegligent party – advances no societal interest that is not already served by the workers’ compensation system.” The Court therefore joined “the majority of jurisdictions in precluding such recovery under the doctrine of peculiar risk.”

Our Supreme Court further developed the principles discussed in Privette and Toland in Hooker v. Department of Transportation (2002) 27 Cal.4th 198, 202 (Hooker), holding that an independent contractor’s employee can recover in tort from the contractor’s hirer if the hirer retained control of safety conditions at a worksite and its negligent exercise of that retained control “affirmatively contributed to the employee’s injuries.”

In sum, the Privette line of cases “establishes that an independent contractor’s hirer presumptively delegates to that contractor its tort law duty to provide a safe workplace for the contractor’s employees.”

In the present case, Seabright contends the evidence raised triable issues of material fact as to whether Comcast retained control of the jobsite and affirmatively contributed to Mejia-Gutierrez’s injuries. It also contends the evidence raised a triable issue of material fact as to whether Comcast breached a nondelegable regulatory duty to provide Mejia-Gutierrez with a safe workplace.

The Court conclude that, regardless of whether there were problems with either of the wires that snapped, such as crystallization or a knot, which played a part in its snapping, the general duty of rule to “frequently and thoroughly” inspect lines to ensure they are in good condition – is not a basis for holding Comcast liable for Mejia-Gutierrez’s injuries. This is particularly so, given that Mejia-Gutierrez, on behalf of AC Square, was specifically responsible for discerning and addressing problems with drop lines and ensuing job site safety.

Michael McFadden New Regional VP for Patriot National Insurance

Patriot National Insurance Group, a leading provider of workers’ compensation insurance solutions announced the appointment of Michael McFadden as Regional Vice President for California. As RVP, Mr. McFadden will oversee all marketing and underwriting responsibilities for California, and will be based at Patriot’s western regional office in Woodland Hills, CA.

Steven Mariano, Chief Executive Officer and Chairman of Patriot National Insurance Group said, “Mike’s extensive workers’ compensation background and strong leadership make him the natural choice to lead the California region. We are excited to continue our expansion in California operations.”

Mr. McFadden said, “Since joining Patriot in October of 2011 its been a tremendous experience expanding our west coast regional headquarters. The RVP position will allow me to continue to grow the talent within our operation, which now includes local underwriting presence, while also having personal involvement in the production and distribution channels in the region.”

Before joining Patriot National, Mr. McFadden held various leadership positions at Zenith Insurance Company and was most recently Zenith’s Vice President of Claims for the Los Angeles regional office. Mr. McFadden was also the manager of Organizational Development for RJM Adjusters, Inc. He graduated from University of Phoenix with a degree in Business Management.

Patriot National Insurance Group is an insurance holding company focused on workers’ compensation insurance. Patriot National Insurance Group has two operating subsidiaries- Guarantee Insurance Company and Patriot Underwriters, Inc.

Steven E. Penman New Sedgwick Chief Operating Officer

Sedgwick announced today that Steven E. Penman has been named the company’s chief operating officer.

Spending nearly his entire storied career with Sedgwick, Penman joined the company in 1978 and since then has served in several management and leadership roles. As chief information officer, Penman oversaw the original design and development of the JURIS® system, Sedgwick’s industry-leading proprietary technology platform that remains the heart and soul of its business. Under Penman’s leadership, cutting-edge systems and technology became an integral part of Sedgwick’s service offerings.

Penman later transitioned to the operations side of the business, spending nearly a decade as director of field operations with management responsibility for Sedgwick’s claims servicing teams. Most recently, he served as executive vice president of specialty operations, helping Sedgwick grow its specialty claims operations, customer service centers, ancillary services, and clinical and cost containment operations.

Penman began his professional career at Blue Cross Blue Shield, programming the company’s Medicare claims system. He is also a former member of the U.S. Marine Corps.

“Thanks to Steve Penman ‘s thirty-plus years of service with Sedgwick and his wealth of industry knowledge and experience, he understands our business – and that of our clients – inside and out,” said David A. North , Sedgwick’s president and CEO. “Steve is the ideal person to help lead our company to the next stage of our continued growth and development.”

Sedgwick and its affiliated companies deliver claims, productivity, managed care, risk consulting, and other services to clients through the expertise of more than 10,000 colleagues in 195 offices located in the U.S. and Canada. The company specializes in workers’ compensation; disability, FMLA, and other employee absence; managed care; general, automobile, and professional liability; warranty and credit card claims services; fraud and investigation; structured settlements; and Medicare compliance solutions. Sedgwick and its affiliates design and implement customized programs based on proven practices and advanced technology that exceed client expectations. For eight years in a row, Sedgwick has been awarded the distinguished Employer of Choice® certification, the only third-party administrator (TPA) to receive this designation. In 2011 and 2012, the company was named the Best Overall Large Account TPA by buyers of risk services through an independent survey conducted by Business Insurance.

Conviction of La Jolla Physician Example of Alarming “Epidemic” in Counterfeit Drugs

A prominent La Jolla oncologist and his corporate medical practice have pleaded guilty in connection with a scheme to import unapproved foreign cancer drugs at a deep discount, dispense them to unwitting patients, bill Medicare as if the drugs were legitimate, and pocket the profits. In a hearing before United States Magistrate Judge Bernard Skomal on January 15, Dr. Joel I Bernstein entered a guilty plea to a single count of introducing an unapproved drug into interstate commerce – in this case, a cancer drug called “Mabthera” intended for market in Turkey – and administering it to patients. The approved United States drug with the same active ingredient is Rituxan, which is used to treat lymphomas and leukemias such as non-Hodgkin lymphoma and chronic lymphocytic leukemia.

Bernstein was released pending sentencing, which is scheduled for April 16 at 1:30 PM before Judge Skomal. In addition, his medical practice, Dr. Joel I Bernstein, MD. Inc ., also pleaded guilty at a hearing today before United States District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo to one count of health care fraud.

According to the plea agreement with the corporation, employees of Dr. Joel I Bernstein, MD. Inc. purchased $3.4 million of foreign cancer drugs, knowing they had not been approved by the United States Food and Drug Administration for use in the United States.

From 2007 to 2011, Bernstein’s office purchased these drugs for significantly less than market value in the United States and then submitted claims to Medicare at the full reimbursement price. To conceal the scheme, the office fraudulently used Medicare reimbursement codes for approved cancer drugs, as Medicare does not pay for unapproved drugs. The plea agreement for the corporation also calls for $1.7 million in restitution to Medicare, plus forfeiture of $1.2 million in profits. The corporate medical practice is scheduled to be sentenced on May 17, 2013, before Unites States District Judge Cathy Ann Bencivengo.

In addition, the government has also filed a False Claims Act lawsuit in District Court against Dr. Bernstein and his medical corporation for submitting false claims to the Medicare Program for these unapproved drugs. According to this civil complaint, the Medicare Program was defrauded of over $1.7 million, and under the False Claims Act, the United States can recover triple the amount of damages plus monetary penalties.

The cases involving Dr. Bernstein and his practice are the latest example of an alarming nationwide trend that potentially puts patients at risk by exposing them to foreign drugs – particularly injectable chemotherapy drugs – that are not vetted by the FDA. Agency officials have described the trend as an “epidemic of unapproved and counterfeit drugs.” The FDA’s Office of Criminal Investigations (OCI) currently has over 200 investigations nationwide involving schemes in which medical practices purchase foreign, unapproved drugs and dispense them to unsuspecting patients for personal financial gain. This practice is particularly disturbing because, unlike traditional prescription drugs which are dispensed to the patient by a pharmacy, oncology drugs are typically infused into a patient without the patient ever seeing the box it came in, or any of the related labeling. “This isn’t just about the greed of one doctor but about the welfare of many patients,” said United States Attorney Laura Duffy.

There have been numerous similar cases of illegal importation and distribution of foreign unapproved drugs in San Diego and around the United States in recent years. In cases related to Bernstein, a Florida-based cancer-drug supplier, Martin Paul Bean, III was indicted by a federal grand jury in San Diego in September 2012 for allegedly selling more than $7 million of misbranded and unapproved prescription oncology drugs to United States doctors. Please see 12-cr-03734-WQH USA. The indictment alleged that from 2005 to 2011, Bean, doing business as GlobalRxStore; ordered the misbranded and unapproved drugs from foreign countries, including Turkey, India, and Pakistan; and sold them to the doctors throughout the United States at substantially discounted prices via a wholesale pharmacy in San Diego.

That pharmacy – Oberlin Medical Supply and Service Corp. – was owned and operated by Maher Idriss, who pleaded guilty March 8, 2012, to conspiring with Bean to supply the unapproved drugs. Idriss acknowledged that United States doctors paid him over $7 million for foreign-sourced unapproved oncology drugs from May 2006 to May 2011. Idriss faces up to five years in prison and restitution and has already forfeited approximately $54,000 of profits. He is scheduled for sentencing May 20, 2013.

Elsewhere in the country, doctors, office staff, and drug suppliers in Maryland, Missouri, Tennessee, and California were indicted in similar schemes in 2011 and 2012. They were accused of importing misbranded cancer drugs at significantly cheaper prices, providing them to patients without disclosing the source of the drugs, and then submitting claims for reimbursement from healthcare programs. It was the FDA’s discovery of two counterfeit drugs – Avastin, the approved blockbuster cancer drug for treatment of colorectal, lung, kidney, and brain cancer; and Altuzan, the unapproved Turkish version of Avastin – that brought national media attention to the problem. The Altuzan was found to contain no active ingredient at all and thus would provide no benefit whatsoever to patients.

Rising Claims and Safety Emphasis May Cause NFL Demise

The thousands of lawsuits that have been filed nationwide, and the workers’ compensation claims filed by NFL players in California have triggered safety concerns that some say may lead to the end of the NFL. Bernard Pollard, the hard-hitting Baltimore Ravens safety told recently that he doesn’t believe the league will be in existence in 30 years because of rules changes instituted in an effort to make the game safer, and the chance a player might die on the field as players continue to get stronger and faster.

“Thirty years from now, I don’t think it will be in existence. I could be wrong. It’s just my opinion, but I think with the direction things are going — where [NFL rules makers] want to lighten up, and they’re throwing flags and everything else — there’s going to come a point where fans are going to get fed up with it,” he told the website. “Guys are getting fined, and they’re talking about, ‘Let’s take away the strike zone’ and ‘Take the pads off’ or ‘Take the helmets off.’ It’s going to be a thing where fans aren’t going to want to watch it anymore.”

The issue of football safety was on the mind of President Barack Obama recently when he told The New Republic in an interview for its Feb. 11 issue that, if he had a son, he would think long and hard before allowing him to play the sport.. Obama told the magazine that football fans are going to have to wrestle with the fact that the game will probably change over time to try to reduce the violence. The president says that some of those changes might make football, in his words, “a bit less exciting” but that it will be much better for players. “And those of us who are fans maybe won’t have to examine our consciences quite as much,” he said.

NFL spokesman Greg Aiello responded to Obama’s comments Sunday, saying the NFL has “no higher priority than player health and safety at all levels of the game.”

Pollard said he understands the movement to make the game safer for players, but coaches are looking for players who are “stronger and faster year in and year out. And that means you’re going to keep getting big hits and concussions and blown-out knees. “The only thing I’m waiting for … and, Lord, I hope it doesn’t happen … is a guy dying on the field. We’ve had everything else happen there except for a death. We understand what we signed up for, and it sucks,” he told the website.

Pollard has a reputation for big hits. He was fined $15,250 for unnecessary roughness last week for his third-quarter hit on New England Patriots wide receiver Wes Welker in the Ravens’ AFC Championship Game victory. Pollard received a 15-yard penalty on the play for striking an opponent in the head and neck area. He also forced a crucial fumble, however, by knocking running back Stevan Ridley out of that game. He was not penalized or fined for the hit on Ridley.

2013 CAAA Convention Topics Focus on S.B. 863

The California Applicants’ Attorney Winter 2013 Convention is now underway at the San Diego Sheraton and Marina Hotel. The annual meeting will continue until Sunday January 27. The focus on this years convention is “Navigating Your Way Through The Comp System Since SB 863.” Panelists on the first day of the event discussed Medical Control’s and MPNs as well as Discovery and Right to Privacy.

It was not unexpected that panelists anticipate constitutional challenges to the validity of some of the provisions of S.B. 863. The same view was expressed by panelists at the Employers Fraud Task Force presentation earlier this month. It is not clear who or when this challenge will take place, but the consensus is that the theory will involve the constitutional requirement for due process of law. Simply stated, there is a constitutional requirement for a dispute resolution mechanism that provides notice and and opportunity to be heard. The challenge to S.B. 863 will claim that the Independent Bill Review and the Independent Medical Review process does not achieve minimum standards of due process of law. The constitutional argument theorizes that the two administrative procedures do not allow claimants or the employer the ability to argue their case before the decision maker in either of these two administrative processes, and since there is no effective right to appeal before the WCAB on matters of expert opinion, the administrative process falls short of the constitutional requirement.

Panelists also discussed the discovery and privacy rights that changed under the new law. The provisions of LC 4903.6(d) now says that medical information that can not be sent to non-physician lien claimants without written authorization from the WCAB. WCAB Orders must specify what is to be disclosed, and findings that it is relevant. There will be a greater emphasis now on protecting the privacy rights of the injured worker. From the applicants’ standpoint, subpoenas that request “any and all” records would be over broad and subject to petitions to limit that discovery.

LC 5502(b) now includes “whether the injured employee is required to obtain treatment within a medical provider network” as an appropriate issue for an expedited hearing. Presenters claimed that applicant attorneys will now seek expedited hearings on MPN issues since S.B. 868 did away with the rights of the employer to transfer workers back into an MPN, and for that reason if they get out of the MPN, they will remain out indefinitely with “that” treating physician.

The 2013 CAAA Convention continues today and over the weekend. A topic for Friday is “New Ethical Considerations Under SB863” Conflicts of Interest – Dealing with the rules and potential problems – Attorneys, doctors and their staff…… Be aware! – What is an attorney’s legal obligation? On Saturday the topics will include “Utilization Review – UR: What about denied claims or partial denied claims? – Independent Medical Review – Employer to serve applicant attorney with all materials sent to IMR – Time limitations; what happens if review is untimely? – Is there a role for the AME or PQME in treatment disputes?”