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MCO season: Monetizing workers’ compensation managed care services in Ohio

With open enrollment coming to a close this Friday, May 25, Ohio employers are nearing the end of their opportunity to select a managed care organization (MCO) to coordinate the medical aspects of workers’ compensation claims for the coming two years. During MCO Open Enrollment, materials are published that attempt to compare MCOs in terms of effectiveness and service. What factors should be considered when choosing an MCO? Ultimately, employers must select an MCO based on what is most important

Photo courtesy of CBS News
Volcanos, earthquakes, fires and floods – how are we preparing for CATs in 2018?
Photo courtesy of CBS News

The 2018 CAT season has started with a vengeance. Already, we are seeing damage from flooding, earthquakes and a volcano in Hawaii. On top of that, hurricane season will soon be underway, the potential increases for droughts and related fires, and we will remain ready for ever-unpredictable earthquakes and tornadoes. What has changed since 2017, a year unlike any most of us have ever experienced in the insurance industry since the “Four in ’04” and Katrina, Rita, Wilma in 2005? Major hurricanes

Why staying engaged and productive works

In the workers’ compensation and disability arena, working itself is beneficial to a person. Work is therapeutic. Besides the obvious financial benefit, working also offers valuable opportunities to socialize and be productive. Socializing, being at work, even telecommuting, forces us to interact with others. We get out of ourselves for several hours a day instead of being isolated. That can be very beneficial for someone suffering from chronic pain, for example. Time spent focusing only on ours

Technology and the future of claims adjusting

As we prepare for the 2018 storm season, I can’t help but look back at the impact of 2017’s extreme weather. We have seen how vital it is to be ready to respond quickly to property claims in the field. Catastrophic weather events continue to test underwriting performance, stretch resources in restoring disrupted supply chains, and impact timelines for estimating losses and rebuilding infrastructures. One constant is having the right partners when handling major claim events. This can mean th

The value of work: A case study

In a recent case, I helped an injured employee overcome anxiety and return to work.  It turned out that going back to work was its own kind of cure.  Ryan was off work due to a lower back injury.  His claims examiner contacted me because Ryan was not following the course of physical therapy he needed and it was delaying his recovery.  I talked with Ryan and learned that he was afraid of getting better and going back to work because he feared reinjury.  Staying off work

Putting safety first: National Prescription Drug Take Back Day 2018

Sedgwick routinely reminds clients and colleagues about the U.S. Drug Enforcement Administration’s (DEA’s) National Prescription Drug Take Back Days. The next Take Back Day will be Saturday, April 28 from 10 a.m. – 2 p.m. In 2010, the DEA started organizing communities and local law enforcement to work together for safe disposal of prescription drugs in an effort to keep unnecessary and potentially hazardous or deadly prescription drugs out of homes and neighborhoods. The Take Back initiative i

HumboldtStrong: A gift for the team

On April 6, a bus carrying members of the Humboldt Broncos, a junior hockey team from Saskatchewan collided with a transport truck, killing 16 people and injuring more than a dozen others. In the days since the accident, the nation of Canada and global hockey community have rallied around those affected by this tragedy. A now-closed GoFundMe campaign raised more than $15 million for a memorial fund benefiting the victims and their families, making it one of the five largest fundraising effor

Therapy animals produce smiles

If you attended RIMS 2018 last week, chances are you were smiling in the conference hall. The Therapy Animals of San Antonio were our guests in the RIMS WellnessZENter as our designated charity this year. Their mission of bringing people and animals together for healing came to life this week. I watched people go past the WellnessZENter, look in, keep walking and then the magnetic appeal of a furry four legged friend led them back and smiles immediately came to tired faces. Just like our therapy

Global solutions; local expertise

It is not often that your first blog for an organization is to write about one of the most exciting moments in the company’s history. It truly is a day of celebration for all of us. Earlier today we announced that Sedgwick has finalized its purchase of global loss adjusting, claims management and risk solutions firm Cunningham Lindsey and its subsidiaries. This solidifies one of our core values: “to operate as one company, one team.” I am especially honored to serve as the vice chair for Sedgwic

Operationalizing risk appetite for non-financial companies

Risk appetite and tolerance continue to be vexing challenges, even for risk leaders in financial institutions where their use is typically more common and advanced. However, those in non-financial organizations face tougher challenges, beginning with management skepticism of the benefit of these tools. For financial institution risk leaders, motivation is significantly driven by rating agencies and regulators, where risk quantification, correlation and aggregation are all very strong, helpful r

Forward-facing financials and focus

What keeps you awake at night as a risk manager? For many, it may be demonstrating to the C-suite the value and importance you bring to your organization. This can be a challenging task for all departments, but it sometimes seems like risk management is one area that doesn’t always get the attention it deserves unless a true risk scenario calls upon its expertise when something goes wrong. One of the most valuable skills a risk manager can have is the ability to develop and articulate a forward

To grant or not to grant? That is the question Intermittent leave as an ADA accommodation

It’s no secret that intermittent leave, whether under the Family and Medical Leave Act (FMLA) or the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA), is difficult for employers to track and manage, but it is also an area that can spark lawsuits. What are the ins and outs of intermittent leave as an ADA accommodation and how can we make it work for employers and employees alike? Let’s take a look at the reasons employees request intermittent leave, typical conditions where intermittent leave is a considera

Spencer/Sedgwick 5K Fun Run 2018

In less than a month, many of us will gather in San Antonio for RIMS 2018. While a lot of business activity happens during the conference, a lot of good happens in support of our industry, as well. One of the best examples is the Spencer/Sedgwick 5K Fun Run. It’s hard to believe that we are approaching the fourth annual run this year! Sedgwick is very proud to see the Fun Run continue to take great strides forward. (See what I did there? Strides = running… Well, I digress.) The important

Improving consumer experience

Just this past week Dave North, our President and CEO, reminded an audience at the Integrated Benefits Institute conference that our industry must strive for one button simplicity. Despite often being known for its complexity, our industry’s goal should be to make things as easy as possible for the people impacted when something unexpected happens – a workplace injury, property or financial loss or damage from a natural or man-made disaster, the birth of a child or another medical situation, a

Drive-thru operators beware: A double-double = an accident benefits claim?

The Court of Appeal for Ontario recently released a decision in a case that has far-reaching impacts. In Dittmann v. Aviva Insurance Company of Canada, an Ontario accident benefits claim was presented to the insurer, Aviva Canada, as a result of a scalding burn sustained on July 7, 2014 when a hot beverage ordered at a McDonald’s drive-thru spilled on the claimant causing significant injuries. Rather than pursuing a commercial general liability claim for damages, a claim was presented to th

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