Workers' Compensation

Why is it important to have relationships with medical providers?

Amanda Hagerty
Reading time 3 Mins
Published on Feb 24

Many employers have close relationships with the medical providers that treat their injured employees. It’s important that providers are familiar with your company and how you manage workers’ compensation claims. It’s equally important for the physicians to know what type of business you operate so they can make educated decisions regarding return to work. One recommendation is to give physicians a tour of your facility to help doctors have firsthand knowledge about what you do. This allows the physician to make better recommendations regarding return to work, either full capacity or modified duty.

Here are some additional tips and recommendations:

  • Familiarity
    • Make sure your preferred provider is familiar with your company and knows what type of business you operate. Send them a company overview or brochure if you have one.
    • Offer the provider a tour of your facility so they have direct knowledge of various job tasks. This could also lead to suggestions from the provider for different return to work strategies.
    • Ask the provider to establish a profile for your company in their system. This enables them to access your specific protocols for workplace accidents.
  • Return to work
    • The provider should know your standards for getting an injured employee back to work. For example, do you offer modified duty work all the time or on a case-by-case basis? Let them know.
    • Job descriptions or a list of job tasks are key to help the provider get the injured worker back to work quickly. The provider will be able to evaluate what job functions the injured employee will be able to perform and how often.
    • If there are barriers outside of the injury preventing the injured worker from returning to work, the provider should be able to discuss this with your managed care organization (MCO) and determine a plan of action.
  • Cost containment
    • Using your MCO’s network may save you above the Ohio Bureau of Workers’ Compensation network discounts.
    • The provider should be extremely familiar with the workers’ compensation process and be able to submit the necessary paperwork timely. Otherwise, the progress of the claim could be delayed or even stopped. This can cause extended time off work and increased claims cost.
    • Negotiate pricing on drug testing and pre-employment exams.*

There are many reasons why it’s important to establish a relationship with a provider. If you need help, reach out to your MCO. They’ll be able to give you several suggestions and even help facilitate building that relationship.

*It is important to know that any extra services you request from the physician may not be paid under the claim (e.g. pre-employment drug testing).  Therefore, you will need to make sure the provider knows to send those particular bills to your organization.

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