State of Connecticut Workers' Compensation Commission, John A. Mastropietro, Chairman
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Public Meeting of the Workers’ Compensation Commissioners

March 2, 2012

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September 7, 2012

December 7, 2012

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June 1, 2012

A meeting of the Workers’ Compensation Commissioners was held on Friday, June 1, 2012 at 9:30 a.m. at the Office of the Chairman, 21 Oak Street, 4th Floor, Hartford, CT.

Agenda Topics

  1. Medical/RME Vendors - Guest Ms. Beth Ludwig
  2. Practice Book (Depositions)
  3. Stipulation Lanugage re: Liens
  4. Commissioners Examinations
  5. Cervical-Lumbar Protocols and Shoulder/Knee Protocols
  6. Hand Protocols
  7. Narcotic/Opiod Protocols
  8. Doctors Dispensing of Drugs
  9. Hospital Reimbursement (“Actual Cost”)
  10. UConn Medical Reports
  11. Outstanding Decisions - Commissioner Thompson
  12. Budget
  13. Chairman’s Update
    • Executive Session

Minutes

A regular meeting of the Workers’ Compensation Commissioners was held on Friday, June 1, 2012 at the office of the Chairman of the Workers’ Compensation Commission, Capitol Place, 21 Oak Street, Hartford, Connecticut. The meeting convened at 9:30 a.m. with all Commissioners present. Also present were Marvin Smernoff, Nancy Bonuomo, Madeleine Lemieux, Vincent Flynn, Connie Rue-Yatcko and Tara Remillard of the Workers’ Compensation Commission, Linda Passanisi of the Workers’ Compensation Commission Advisory Board, Jack Hayden of Automated HealthCare Solutions and Beth Ludwig of ISG.

Before today’s meeting commenced, Chairman Mastropietro called for a moment of silence in memory of Commissioner Clifton E. Thompson, who recently passed away.

  1. Medical/RME Vendors
    1. Ms. Beth Ludwig of ISG spoke to the Commissioners regarding the services that her company provides. ISG is a company that schedules RMEs, Medical Records/Peer Reviews and Functional Capacity Examinations. Discussion ensued about how her company’s goal is to assist the claimant return to work and return to pre-injury status and what the Commissioners expect from these examinations. The Chairman reported that he gets numerous complaints from doctors that they are pressured by third-party administrators into modifying their reports. The Chairman asks that the Commissioners monitor the situation and provide him with specific instances so it can be dealt with appropriately.
  2. Practice Book (Depositions)
    1. Nancy Bonuomo reported that some concerns had been reported to the Chairman’s office - resulting as determined at the March 2, 2012 Commissioners’ Meeting.
  3. Stipulation Language re: Liens
    1. Concerns have been brought to the Chairman regarding language being placed in Stipulations that if there are liens that have not been paid that they be the responsibility of the Claimant to pay. It was decided that each party has to right to accept or reject the terms of the stipulation and that the party who is subject to the lien, is responsible for the lien. If a lien is found to exist after the Stipulation is approved, a party is free to take whatever steps it deems appropriate to protect its interest.
  4. Commissioner Examinations
    1. The Chairman has received telephone calls from several doctors that they are being asked additional questions after their reports have been prepared. The Chairman asks please be aware of the questions you are asking the doctor. Of course, if the report is lacking clarity, additional questions may be necessary. Additional fees may be required if questions were caused by something else. Otherwise, a deposition is the appropriate method of further inquiry.
  5. Cervical-Lumbar Protocols and Shoulder/Knee Protocols
    1. The Chairman provided an update pertaining to the Cervical-Lumbar protocols which have been updated and published effective July 1, 2012. The Shoulder protocols will be published within the next 30-60 days. The Knee protocols are in the process of being updated and should be completed and published within 60-90 days.
  6. Hand Protocols
    1. The Chairman provided an update pertaining to the Hand protocols. The Hand protocols are in the process of being updated and likely will be completed and published in the fall.
  7. Narcotic/Opioid Protocols
    1. The Chairman provided an update pertaining to the Narcotic/Opioid protocols which have been updated and published effective July 1, 2012.
  8. Doctors Dispensing of Drugs
    1. The Practitioner Fee Schedule will be released effective July 15, 2012 and include a definition of the Average Wholesale Price for purposes of Doctors Dispensing of Drugs. The various stakeholders have met multiple times pertaining to this issue and have agreed on language to more clearly define the Average Wholesale Price on which reimbursement will be based.
  9. Hospital Reimbursement (“Actual Cost”)
    1. Discussion ensued pertaining to Hospital Reimbursements. There are a few cases pending before the Commission where the hospitals are seeking reimbursement and they are being reimbursed at a greatly reduced rate. The Chairman is currently drafting a document explaining the situation before us and will meet with the Lt. Governor to ascertain the Administration’s input relative to this issue.
  10. UConn Medical Reports
    1. The Chairman reports that he continues to receive complaints pertaining to UConn’s lack of timeliness in providing reports. The Chairman asks that you monitor the time it takes them to provide reports. Please provide specific instances in which UConn has not provided a medical report pursuant to guideline timetables.
  11. Outstanding Decisions (Commissioner Thompson)
    1. Since Commissioner Thompson passed, New Britain and Norwich have been reviewing the decisions that need to be written or Formal hearings that have yet to be completed. We are also looking for volunteers to consider writing decisions or to finish the Formals. Please let Tara know as soon as possible.
  12. Scheduling (Commissioner Thompson)
    1. The Chairman reported that he has spoken with the Governor’s Office and they intend to make an interim appointment to replace Commissioner Thompson. We do not know how long it will take to get someone on board and up to speed. In the interim, we may experience some delays in scheduling between his passing and summer vacations.
  13. Budget
    1. There has been no change since the conference call of a few weeks ago. The Special Session is scheduled for June 12, 2012 where the budget’s implementer will be discussed among other issues.
  14. Chairman’s Update
    1. The Chairman reported that as of June 15, we will lose any support that we have for the WCS system as our Consultant has found employment elsewhere. That leaves us with no one to maintain our System.
    2. Client Security Fund - Everyone should have received their notice. Please keep in mind that this is due on June 15, 2012.
    3. Ethics Compliance - The Commission has received a certificate from the Office of State Ethics that we are 100% in compliance with the filing of Statements of Financial Interest.

There being no further business, Commissioner Goldberg made a motion to adjourn. Commissioner Vargas seconded the motion, which passed unanimously. The meeting was adjourned at 11:10 a.m.

Workers’ Compensation Commission

Page last revised: March 15, 2013

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State of Connecticut Workers' Compensation Commission, John A. Mastropietro, Chairman
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