Illinois Workers’ Compensation Forum

On March 11, 2013, Risk Manager Larry Krause participated in a stakeholder panel discussion at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Forum at the Westin Hotel in Lombard. 

The panel discussed the impact of the workers’ compensation reforms of 2011. It was moderated by John Power, a workers’ compensation defense attorney from Oak Brook. 

Other panel members were Christina Hemenway, the workers’ compensation manager for Country Insurance and Financial Services, David Menchetti, a workers’ compensation petitioner’s attorney, John Smolk, a senior manager of workers’ compensation and corporate insurance for United Airlines and Preston Wolin, MD, an orthopedic surgeon from Chicago. 

Primary points of discussion were the impact of the reforms on each of the stakeholders’ operations. For the City, the workers’ compensation medical fee schedule reduction has resulted in savings on medical treatment for injured workers. For example, in 2011, the City was billed $1,059,054. The fee schedule reductions were $310,916. In 2012, the first full year of the reduced fee schedule, the City was billed $1,014,126 and the fee schedule reductions were $464,710. Implementation of the AMA guidelines for permanent impairment is trending to reduce costs for permanent partial disability.