Partnering for Innovation – A Unique Workers' Compensation Model

Timeslot: Tuesday, October 10, 2023 - 2:45 PM to 3:45 PM
Session Type: Concurrent Session


UMass Memorial Health is the largest health care system in Central Massachusetts, employing over 15,000 caregivers in four hospitals, behavioral health, and ambulatory care sites. UMass Memorial is self-insured for workers' compensation, and claims are managed through the Occupational Injury Care office, in conjunction with Employee Health Services.

This session will present an innovative model in which the nurse case manager initiates contact with the injured worker. Vocational rehabilitation is embedded in the unit as opposed to being outsourced. The individual roles of Nurse Case Managers and Certified Disability Management Specialists (CDMS) within this unique workers' compensation model and specific advantages in this approach will be described.

There will be discussion of the overlap of benefits and coordination of Workers' Compensation and Leave of Absence types (Paid Family and Medical Leave [PFML]; Family Medical Leave Act [FMLA]; Short Term Disability [STD]). A case study in improving the safety of employees in the relentless pursuit of innovation (“Gurney Journey”) will be presented.

And finally, workers' compensation success stories and challenges will be discussed.

Learning Outcomes

  • Describe the advantages of utilizing nurse case management and disability management early in a workers' compensation claim  

  • Understand the need for coordination of workers' compensation and other leave benefits

  • Discover innovative solutions (and funding) to reduce injuries within their own organizations