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First responder PTSD presumption bill filed in New Mexico


Police and emergency medical services first responders would have a presumptive workers compensation injury if they get diagnosed with post-traumatic stress disorder relative to a workplace incident under proposed legislation filed by New Mexico lawmakers Tuesday.

New Mexico House Bill 427 would create a presumption that post-traumatic stress disorder is proximately caused by employment for law enforcement officers and emergency services first responders if a physician or psychologist determines the diagnosis to be work-related.

The PTSD must result in physical impairment, primary or secondary mental impairment or death in order for workers to quality for comp benefits.

Under the bill, if a court subsequently determines the presumption does not apply or that the condition is not related to employment, an employer’s workers comp insurance provider shall be reimbursed for health care costs borne by the medical or health insurance plan or benefit.

If signed into law, the measure would take effect on July 1.