Although it has been two years since the outbreak of coronavirus and COVID-19, it still doesn’t stop showing its impact on workers’ compensation claims. As more and more government authorities begin to relax their work-from-home orders, signaling a return to the workplaces, companies, and businesses are all set to undertake a bigger risk of issues that are covered under workers’ compensation.

Firstly, we need to acknowledge the fact that the impact of COVID-19 is unprecedented. We have often been informed by the media that the effect of COVID was the combination of the effects of 9/11, SARS/MERS, and the financial crisis of 2008. Each of these significant events had shaken the markets, forced people to adjust themselves to a new way of living, and influenced changes in business behavior. COVID-19 is different from them as it has a universal impact.

Workers’ Compensation Issues to watch out for in 2022

Every year there are webinars conducted to evaluate the new issues of workers’ compensation insurance programs. After the last 2 years were impacted by COVID, there is a new set of challenges presented to this industry. In this list, we will discuss a few challenges that are related to health care, workers’ compensation, and risk management. Employers, pay attention to this list!

Mandatory Vaccines

Source: shrm.org

The mandates regarding vaccines have always been at the front seat of controversy. In 2021 December, the Society for Human Resource Management reported that 80% of the respondents to the survey said they would need vaccination in case the US Supreme Court denied the mandate. On the other hand, the Supreme Court permitted the Centers for Medicare and Medicaid Services mandatory vaccines to go into effect.THis spread its impact on all healthcare workers funded by CMS.

Workforce Challenges

Reskilling and upskilling the workforce to prepare an entire generation of risk and claim professionals has been one of the leading centers of focus after the mass retirements within the industry. Due to the huge changes in the workplace during the pandemic, there have been a new set of retention challenges. As there are more and more companies in a hybrid and work-from-home environment, leaders also have to evolve themselves in order to offer meaningful training and support, while making sure every employee is heard.

Data and Technology

There are several companies that focus on digital strategy and data science as the most important components of the value story that surpass the expectations of employees and customers. There’s no doubt about the fact that data is one of the main business assets but it is also true at the same time that data is no longer of the most noteworthy value.

Workers’ compensation trends – Which are the most common claims?

We have compiled a list of the most common workers’ comp claims and the kinds of injuries that lead employees to file a claim. In case there is an accident that occurs, you can seek the help of work comp lawyers from law firms like www.gplawyers.com. Keep reading to know more.

Punctures, cuts, scrapes

Source: aboutkidshealth.ca

If an employee suffers from minor cuts, scrapes, scratches, or punctures in your workplace and has enough evidence to prove the injury, he can file a worker’s compensation claim. However, you, as an employer, have to prevent these injuries by maintaining proper protocols and ensuring that the employees are out of harm. Implement right protocols to avert serious injuries like amputation of arms and legs. Also encourage your employees to wear the right protective equipment while getting involved in dangerous work.

MSD Injury or strain

Though this is the second-most common injury that leads to workers’ compensation claims, musculoskeletal disorders, and strains, they are the most expensive ones. In order to prevent such serious injuries, you need to have a more involved approach towards them. Would you like to reduce chances of having musculoskeletal injuries, you have to become a safety supervisor. You can build platforms for employees who are shorter height so that you don’t expose yourself to the risk. In case you belong to an office setting where the desks can be adjustable, you should make sure you have desks that cater to the needs of different people.

Trips and Falls

Slips, trips, and falls occur at the same level where an employee is standing, rather than from an elevated surface. Hence, you have to make sure all surfaces and floors are cleaned regularly and there are no spills anywhere. Train your employees on some of the best methods of walking at a slower and more appropriate manner. This will make them less likely to trip down while on job. Here are a few ways in which you can prevent trips and falls:

Source: osha-safety-training.net

  • Eliminate obstacles from walkways and keep them decluttered
  • Remove hoses, cables, cords, and wires from walkways
  • Make sure mats, rugs, and carpets are well secured by either taping them or tacking them down. Replace the anti-fatigue mats
  • Remember to close the desk drawers and cabinets whenever you don’t use them
  • Keep the walkways and working spaces perfectly lit
  • Make sure the spills are cleaned or barricaded

MSD injury or strain due to lifting

As long as preventing lifting injuries are concerned, you have to carefully design a workplace that doesn’t demand employees to use any unsafe lifting motions to get things done. This might mean having to store heavy materials in such a manner as to avert lower or higher surfaces to prevent sudden lifting of heavy boxes. You can also consider storing materials and products in smaller boxes.

Strains are the most expensive workers’ compensation claim – Why?

According to reports, strains happened to be the costliest claim during 2019 and 2020. What is the reason behind this? Well, whenever you diagnose a strain in one part of the body, it reveals a strain in several other parts of the body as well. For instance, whenever an employee meets the doctor where he gets diagnosed with neck pain, he will also be diagnosed with a strain in his shoulder. Such injuries raise the costs of workers’ compensation.