Propagating the new work disability paradigm for disability benefits & workers' comp systems


Summit Summary

The Ohio Partnership to Prevent Needless Work Disability held its first major event -- Preventing Needless Work Disability Among Ohioans: A Stay-at-Work & Return-to-Work Leadership Summit -- on March 14, 2008 in Columbus.  One of the largest 60 Summits events to date, more than 135 people participated, and 28 organizations were sponsors.  Experimenting with a new agenda design, this event included same-stakeholder small group work sessions as well as the mixed stakeholder groups that have characterized previous events.  Attendee evaluations overwhelmingly rated the event a success.

See the Final Report of the Ohio Summit.

42% of all attendees at the March 14 Summit signed up to be part of the Ohio 60 Summits action group.  The first organizational meeting was held May 1, 2008.

Post-Summit Activity and Status

The Ohio Partnership to Prevent Needless Work Disability then began an effort to develop recommendations to the Ohio BWC about system improvements to better track return to work progress. However, this group has not been active during the past year. To find out more, contact Rick Wickstrom from the Workability Network at

In April 2009, the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation (BWC - the state fund and sole workers' comp insurer in the state) announced a shift of its clam management system from a disability management to a disability prevention model. (The Bureau was an in-kind sponsor of the Ohio Summit and supplied facilitators for many of the work groups.) The Bureau undertook initiatives to determine methods for identifying workers at risk for long-term disability; to identify appropriate incentives for the delivery of occupational health best practice care sufficient to prevent disability; to identify opportunities for the synthesis of claims management and medical management processes to improve outcomes; and to measure outcomes for disability prevention to allow for a continuous improvement process. The Bureau also eliminated the requirement for a physician order before ergonomic study, job analysis, tools, equipment or job modification could be put in place, and agreed to pay providers travel time and mileage to encourage them in performing work-site based interventions.

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