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Larry Wines

Larry Wines

Photo courtesy of: Workers' Compensation

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Streamlined Workers' Compensation process will benefit employees

New self-insured program begins Jan. 1

As of Nov. 16, Ohio University became the first public university in Ohio to be granted the privilege by the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC) to become a self-insured employer and will be moving into this new program effective Jan. 1, 2013.

Under the old state funded program, employees and their treating physicians were required to file applications and requests for treatment with the BWC, which reviewed the documentation and paid all the obligations for a work-related injury.

Under the new self-insured workers' compensation program, all documents will be filed with the University Workers' Compensation Department, which will be responsible for paying the obligations related to a work-related injury. By removing the BWC from the approval process and streamlining the reporting process, Ohio University will be able to greatly reduce claims processing time and also to reduce the cost for providing workers' compensation coverage.

Frequently Asked Questions

What does this mean for me?

Beginning January 1, 2013, Ohio University will process work-related injury claims more promptly and you will no longer have to wait on the state bureaucracy to begin treatment. During the last five years, Ohio University has approved and certified more than 90 percent of the workers' compensation claims filed. Beginning next year, Ohio University will have the ability to approve claims on its own.

Thus if you are injured on the job your medical bills will be paid more quickly and, if lost time is involved, you will receive compensation more quickly.  

Will the paperwork I file for a work-related injury change?

No. If injured on the job you and your supervisor will still complete an Ohio University Employee Incident Report. Also a First Report of Injury (FROI) must be completed. (FROIs are often completed by the injured worker in conjunction with the treating physician as the health care provider has to complete and sign a portion of the FROI.) 

Your treating physician will still submit the same medical forms as is current practice. The only difference is the forms no longer have to be sent through the regional BWC office for processing and review. Ohio University in conjunction with its third party administrator (TPA) will do all the processing.

What if I have a 2012 or prior year workers' compensation claim?

This change will not affect claims filed prior to 2013. As long as the claim is active, you and your medical provider will still need to submit forms and documents to the BWC as before.

If you have any questions or concerns related to this change please contact Larry Wines at 740-597-1992 or via email at wines@ohio.edu.