State of Denial

Number 20962
Subject Worker Safety
Source WFAA-TV (Dallas)
State TX
Year 2003
Publication Date Nov. 18, 21, Dec. 4, 10, 17, 18, 24, 26, 31, 2003
Summary This series by WFAA-TV in Dallas "revealed a Texas workers' compensation system in crisis," and found "state regulators often failed to enforce labor laws and penalize those insurance companies that unjustly deny benefits and medical treatment to injured workers." The investigation found "state regulators and insurance carriers developed a shockingly cozy relationship." Among other things, regulators slashed reimbursements to doctors up to 50 percent, and escalated the number of denials they handed down to workers, resulting in thousands of injured workers having to "wait six months or more before they're able to gain an initial hearing to dispute the denial of benefits and medical care." The investigation also found a number of underhanded techniques being employed, such as pressure being put on doctors participating in the "peer review" process of claims -- where those who approved medical care were not asked back, while doctors who denied claims were.
Pages 140
Keywords worker's comp;worker's compensation;labor;safety;workplace;job;employment;doctors;health care;benefits;injury;death;treatment;government;Texas
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