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New York State
Workers' Compensation Board
OFFICE OF THE CHAIR
328 State Street  Schenectady, New York 12305
Governor David A. Paterson


Subject No. 046-270

Proposed Medical Treatment Guidelines

Corrects Subject No. 046-270 dated January 22, 2009.

Date: January 26, 2009

One of the goals of the Workers' Compensation Reform initiative is to enhance services provided to injured workers, employers and stakeholders. As part of that effort, the New York State Insurance Department (SID) formed an Advisory Committee that developed Medical Treatment Guidelines and a related training plan for the workers' compensation community. These Medical Treatment Guidelines reflect a consensus of the medical professionals designated by the Committee and the Insurance Department. The Guidelines, which contain standards for medical care of injured workers, should encourage accelerated delivery of quality medical services to those workers and reduce disputes and costs.

The Guidelines and related information may be viewed and downloaded from the Board's web page at the following address:

http://www.wcb.ny.gov/content/main/hcpp/PropMedTreatGuide.jsp

Currently the Board is beginning the process of adopting the Medical Treatment Guidelines released to date through the regulation process. In addition the Board is following the recommendations of the State Insurance Department's Education Plan to develop a comprehensive training program to be available for all stakeholder groups. Additional information on the educational program will be communicated when available.

At this time, use of the Proposed Medical Treatment Guidelines by attending doctors and by carriers' consultants is not mandatory. Nor may these proposed guidelines, since they have yet to be reduced to regulation, be used for making coverage decisions. Nonetheless, it is strongly recommended that doctors become familiar with the Guidelines and where doctors believe it is appropriate, begin to use them in the delivery of medical care to injured workers. All parties are strongly encouraged to begin this process in preparation of submitting comments during the public comment period as part of the regulation adoption process.

Thank you for your continued cooperation.

 

Zachary S. Weiss
Chair