As a result of key legislation passed last year, the state Workers' Compensation Commission recently established a facility fee schedule for hospital and ambulatory surgical centers.

Lawmakers agreed that it would be good for Connecticut to follow the lead of 41 other states in the practice of setting a fee schedule to help contain workers’ comp costs.

With a fee schedule, hospitals will be able to recover costs more quickly, claimants focus on their recovery and getting back to work, and the commission won’t have to divert resources to resolving fee disputes.

The fee schedule is effective for medical treatment rendered on or after April 1, 2015. Not yet certain is the financial impact of the ruling on insured vs. self-insured employers, or how Connecticut’s schedule compares with other states.

New legislation

As in previous years, several bills before the Labor Committee aim to expand workers’ compensation coverage and increase costs.

Connecticut’s workers’ compensation system awards benefits to employees who suffer physical injuries on the job. However, these proposals would enable employees who suffer a psychological injury unrelated to a physical injury to receive benefits. 

SB 105 would expand coverage by amending the definition of "personal injury" under the Workers' Compensation Act to include certain incidents when an individual suffers a mental or emotional impairment as a result of witnessing a death or maiming caused by another person.

SB 107 would expand workers’ compensation benefits to include certain job-related mental or emotional impairments within the definition of "personal injury.”

HB 5616 expands workers’ compensation coverage by allowing individuals who suffer from mental or emotional distress as a result of witnessing traumatic events in the course of their employment to be eligible for workers' compensation benefits.

CBIA will work with legislators to help communicate the potential impacts of this type of legislation on the employer community and the state’s economy.

For more information, contact CBIA’s Louise DiCocco at 860.244.1169 | louise.dicocco@cbia.com