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Workers' Compensation Board

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BPR Program Update


Winter 2016 Update

During the month of June, the Board held Business Process Reengineering (BPR) roadshows throughout the state to provide updates on current BPR initiatives and to kick off Phase 2 of the BPR implementation. A recorded PowerPoint presentation of the roadshow will soon be published to the website if you were not able to attend. Updates provided during the sessions included:

Medical Portal

The Board has held 26 webinar demonstrations of the Medical Portal, which started in December, 2015. To date, 2,083 individuals have participated. This gave stakeholders the opportunity to see the Portal's user interface and learn how the submission and processing of an electronic treatment authorization request will work. The features demonstrated in the webinars include:

  • Log-in process
  • User Dashboard (Home Page)
  • Search functions and results
  • Creation and submission of the treatment
  • authorization request
  • Uploading attachments
  • Work Queues
  • Payer response

Please see the Medical Portal section of the Board's website for more information and a schedule of upcoming webinars. If you have any comments or feedback on the Medical Portal, please email medauth@wcb.ny.gov.

Issues Resolution

The issues resolution initiatives that were implemented earlier this year have been helping to resolve claims more quickly and have enabled the Board to devote more resources to claims that have more complex disputes. These initiatives include the changes in Administrative Determinations (ADs), the changes in Section 32 Waiver Agreements, and the new Voluntary Binding Review process. The goal of the change in the AD process was to reduce the Board's involvement in claims that have no dispute. Since the implementation, the number of ADs issued by the Board has gone down markedly, as shown below.

AD Year/Month Number of ADs Issued
2016-JAN 9,535
2016-FEB 4,237
2016-MAR 4,171
2016-APR 3,372
2016-MAY 3,464

The utilization of a desk review process for eligible Section 32 Waiver Agreements will reduce approval time in these cases and free up hearing calendar time for cases with more pressing issues. For a Section 32 Waiver Agreement case to be eligible for desk review, the injured worker (other than a minor dependent) must be represented by an attorney, the case must be settling indemnity benefits only, or all parties in the agreement request the desk review. This process is totally optional; the Board will continue to use the hearing process for other Section 32 Waiver Agreement cases. The time to approve these cases should be reduced by up to two months.

The new Voluntary Binding Review (VBR) process that went into effect in March 2016 provides a faster path to resolution on cases involving determinations of compensation on indemnity benefits. Participation in VBR is voluntary and requires the agreement of both sides to the dispute as well as the Board.

Monitoring and Performance

The Payor Compliance Monitoring and Performance Program has been measuring timeliness of First Report of Injury (FROI) filings since the beginning of 2016. The payor community has met the performance standards in both the first and second quarter of 2016:

FROI Filings Board Performance Standard Overall % of Timely FROI Filings
Q2 2016 75% 75.80%
Q1 2016 70% 71.50%

Please check the Monitoring and Compliance section of the Board's website for the most up to date information on the Monitoring and Performance Program, including upcoming webinars. If you have any additional questions about the performance program, please email the Monitoring unit at monitoring@wcb.ny.gov.

Updated Claimant Information Packet

The Claimant Information Packet (CIP) has been updated to provide clarity to injured workers on how to file a claim. Although not technically a BPR initiative, the CIP updates address the need for greater communication and transparency between the Board and its stakeholders, especially injured workers, which is one of the BPR's major themes. A new communications letter has been added that explains the various documents and notices that injured workers may receive during the course of his or her claim. It also provides updated instructions on the Employee Claim (Form C-3).

Phase 2 Initiatives

Three new initiatives have been announced for Phase 2 of the BPR implementation: the hearing center redesign, the website redesign, and the modernization of the Board's legacy Claims Management software platform.

The goal of the hearing center redesign project is to improve the experience of injured workers and other stakeholders at the hearing center. The hearing center redesign focuses on the physical space of the Board's hearing centers. A design prototype is being developed that will eventually be applied to all hearing centers. The prototype will act as a template to create and update hearing centers that better serve our stakeholders and ensure the comfort of those who must attend a hearing. Some of the planned improvements include: more space for injured workers and their representatives, enhanced comfort in the different spaces of the hearing center, more information readily available, navigation aids to the hearing parts and other locations inside the hearing center, as well as other features that will improve the overall experience.

For the website redesign project, the Board's website will be completely redesigned to work seamlessly across different devices, e.g., computer, smartphone, tablet. The new website will employ user-centered design principles and methodologies to improve stakeholders' online interactions with the Board. Significant outreach is being planned as part of the design process to ensure that stakeholders' requirements are incorporated into the design and functionality.

The modernization of the Board's legacy systems is the next step in the Board's technological modernization process. The new system is envisioned as a replacement for the Board's internal Claims Information System (CIS) as well as the Board's external facing eCase. Work has already started on business requirements gathering, which will ensure that the new system is built around the requirements of Board staff members and external stakeholders.

Please send any comments, ideas, or other feedback to the BPR mailbox at BPR@wcb.ny.gov. Information can also be found on the Business Process Re-engineering section of the Board's website. To receive email or text notifications about BPR webinars, various events, published documents or other Board activities, please subscribe to WCB Notifications.