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Health joining safety as strategy for managing workers comp claims


DALLAS — Pre-existing health conditions, such as obesity, continue to drive workers compensation claims, and health management programs are critical in managing such conditions, Integrated Benefits Institute President Thomas Parry said Monday.

Preventing workers comp claims has always been about improving workplace safety, but promoting health and wellness among employees is just as important, Mr. Parry told Business Insurance during the WorldatWork 2014 Total Rewards Conference in Dallas, where he spoke about the transformation of health-management strategies.

“More and more workers comp people are recognizing that the underlying health of employees is also becoming a driver of workers compensation claims,” said Mr. Parry, who's based in San Francisco. “Obesity is a very good example (of an underlying health problem).”

Managing safety and return to work won't change the fact that employers have “unhealthy employees who are filing workers comp claims,” he said.

“What you want to do is prevent claims by having a healthy workforce and a safe workplace,” he said.