Blog

HIPAA and Employee Fit-for-Duty Testing

by Richard Bunch, November 15, 2017

In 1996, the Health Insurance Portability and Accountability Act or the HIPAA was endorsed by the U.S. Congress. The HIPAA Privacy Rule, also called the Standards for Privacy of Individually Identifiable Health Information, provided the first nationally-recognizable regulations for the use/disclosure of an individual’s health information. Essentially, the Privacy Rule defines how covered entities use […]

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The Opioid Epidemic – Impact on Hiring and Return to Work

by Richard Bunch, November 15, 2017

The purpose of this WorkSaver newsletter article is to explain WorkSaver’s current physical agility testing policy related to test recipients using pain killing drugs and to provide guidance to employers on how to handle employees who are taking prescription medications, abusing legally prescribed medications and/or taking illegal drugs. As the opioid epidemic grows in the […]

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On the Job Stretching Programs – Are They Effective for Reducing MSDs?

by Richard Bunch, October 2, 2017

According to Bureau of Labor Statistics (2016) musculoskeletal disorder (MSD) cases account for one-third of all worker injury and illness cases. Work-related MSDs (WMSDs), injuries of the joints, and nerves caused or aggravated by work, are among the most frequently reported causes of lost or restricted work time. WMSDs can include carpal tunnel syndrome, tendinitis, […]

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Can an Individual Undergoing a Medical Test Revoke a Release of Medical Information Authorization?

by Richard Bunch, October 2, 2017

The Privacy Rule gives individuals the right to revoke, at any time, an Authorization they have given. The revocation, however, cannot be accepted verbally, but must be in writing. In addition, the written revocation is not effective until the covered entity receives it. In addition, a written revocation is not effective with respect to actions […]

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Workplace Bullying as a Predictor of Disability Retirement

by Richard Bunch, October 2, 2017

Nielsen MB; Emberland JS; Knardahl S. Workplace Bullying as a Predictor of Disability Retirement: A Prospective Registry Study of Norwegian Employees. J Occup Environ Med.  2017; 59(7):609-614 (ISSN: 1536-5948) Workplace Bullying: A situation wherein an employee is persistently and systematically exposed to harassment at work and wherein this employee finds it difficult to defend him- […]

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Fitness for Duty – Requirements for the Offshore Oil Industry

by Richard Bunch, October 2, 2017

(The following information has been contributed by Dr. Michael Kotler, MD, as a co-author of a Fitness for Duty Testing book being written with lead author, Dr. Bunch, and associates.) Occupational medicine professionals care for people working in a very broad range of industries. Moreover, the job descriptions of the workers in these industries cover […]

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The Back Problem and Introduction to New Technology

by Richard Bunch, August 16, 2017

More than one in two adults (between 60 and 80 percent) suffer low back pain in their lifetimes and the condition is estimated to cost billions in healthcare and lost productivity every year. Now, an award-winning design for smart clothing to reduce back strain has been unveiled at the annual meeting of the American Society […]

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WorkSaver Client Spotlight: Danos (A highly valued WorkSaver Client since 2002)

by Richard Bunch, August 16, 2017

Danos’ Fabrication Service Posts 8-Year Incident -Free Record Danos’ Fabrication Services recently celebrated a safety milestone: Eight years without an Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA)-recordable incident. This record represents more than 1.2 million man-hours at the company’s facilities in Larose and Amelia, Louisiana. Danos’ unwavering commitment to safety, one of the company’s core values, […]

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Office Ergonomics and Millennials

by Richard Bunch, August 16, 2017

With more and more millennials utilizing mobile technology or working from home, some of these practices can lead to poor ergonomic practices and related workers’ compensation claims. An ergonomics program for millennials can be quite challenging but also very beneficial. In order to incorporate ergonomics properly for millennials, it is advantageous to understand how millennials […]

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EEOC Guidance on Incentives to Encourage Employees to Participate in Wellness Programs

by Richard Bunch, August 16, 2017

The Equal Employment Opportunity Commission (EEOC or Commission) is issuing its final rule to amend the regulations and interpretive guidance implementing Title I of the Americans with Disabilities Act (ADA) to provide guidance on the extent to which employers may use incentives to encourage employees to participate in wellness programs that ask them to respond […]

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