Our Approach to Injury Management

At OccMedCIC, we feel strongly that excellent care upfront gives best chance for optimal outcomes for all stakeholders especially the injured or ill worker. Unfortunately, this philosophy is in stark contrast to the current MA Workers’ Compensation System which provides very low (13% below Medicare) reimbursement and does not include measures found in other states to improve outcomes and help assure an acceptable standard of care across providers. Here at OccMedCIC, we offer a value based alternative meant to incorporate those evidence based measures. For example, as part of the conclusion of new injury medical care visits providers perform a “transactional call” with Safety Professional, worker, steward, and/or family member to delineate modified duty assignment if medically indicated. This approach allows each participant to contribute, ask questions, and clarify work status. This and other efforts allow OccMedCIC to consistently achieve 85% no lost time. Such efforts positively impact the employer’s Experience Modifier Ratio (EMR).

Active Functional Recovery

Our providers encourage graduated return to normal activity as soon as possible.  To avoid delays in initiating home programs, our providers review a customized self-care program with each injured worker at their first visit with rare exceptions.  Therapy bands, therapy balls and illustrated descriptions are dispensed when appropriate.  Functional assessment is an integral aspect of each visit and sets the tone and focus of our care. Our approach reduces the proportion of patients referred to PT or OT; thus, reserving referrals for those with demonstrated need.  Work restrictions and home programs are reviewed and advanced at follow up visits. Our providers often transition emphasis to career fitness and optimization of the work environment to prevent re-injury and improve well-being.

Telehealth 

OccMedCIC utilizes telehealth (utilizes remote audiovisual input) when clinically appropriate to facilitate the delivery of care conveniently for the worker.

Selectively utilized, telehealth can serve an important role. For example, telehealth may be ideal for quick follow up visits to assure return to full duty readiness and noncomplicated wound care assessments.  In these instances, a treating rapport has already been solidified.  During telehealth visits, workers are informed of their choice to schedule face to face visits and asked if the telehealth visit met their needs. Most workers articulate acceptance and appreciation for the effort. OccMedCIC services numerous large construction sites that have onsite medical professionals (EMT, paramedic, RN) who can actively participate in the telehealth encounter by holding a camera or helping conduct basic functional assessment while the provider observes the worker’s mechanics and responses.

Our Objective

OccMed Consulting and Injury Care seeks to addresses key deficiencies that stem from the now dated Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation Law.  Last revised in 1992, 30 clinics serving workers have closed as reimbursement rates are currently 13% below Medicare (one of the lowest out of the fifty states; e.g., one third NH and half of CT).  Further, MA has zero reimbursement for care coordination and translation. To survive financially, many of the remaining clinics emphasis services like drug screens and surveillance testing and consider the care of injured workers as “loss leaders”. Worse, existing clinics skew care away from what’s evidence based to subsidize (e.g., higher than necessary % referred for PT or surgery) and/or utilize the lowest cost providers.

OccMed Consulting and Injury Care provides a welcomed value proposition alternative.  We partner with sophisticated employers and organizations to step outside the confines of the current Massachusetts Workers’ Compensation System. We mirror cutting edge disability management strategies proven successful in other states.  As an independent, privately held company we are free to forge a new path.  The MA Department of Industrial Accidents (DIA) had outside consultants review MA DIA reimbursements.  Deficiencies have been validated and recommendations made.  Any changes have been placed on hold by current administration (other higher priorities).  Further, it is doubtful that a small % increase alone will impact access to care or care delivery or outcomes.

Referrals

As an independent stand-alone company, we at OccMedCIC are free to render patient centered care.  We inform each injured worker that Massachusetts is a choice state; we ask where they live and if they have any preferences.  When requested, we guide and coordinate the worker’s entire care cycle utilizing those subspecialist who have proven over-time to facilitate care, communicate well, and optimize outcomes.  Our goal is to match the worker with the resources he or she needs.  Regarding acute care needs, we are deliberately located adjacent the MGH Emergency Department and the Mass Eye and Ear to facilitate real-time triage referrals when clinically indicated.

Language

OccMedCIC is proud to maintain Spanish speaking staff who can assist during injury management.  We offer medical evaluation forms in Spanish. However, employees with limited English language skills are recommended to attend appointments with family or friends who can translate for them.

Wound Care

What we do 

OccMedCIC is prepared and trained to handle a variety of work place wounds. We treat wounds and coordinate active functional recovery to avoid lost time.

  • Incision and Drainage Procedures
  • Laboratory testing for Culture and Sensitivity for treating infections
  • Foreign body exploratory procedures
  • Wound follow up care from the Emergency Department
  • Suturing
    • OccMedCIC has three providers that are experienced in suturing.
    • John W. Burress has specialized skills in complex, layered closures for any part of the body. He is comfortable dealing with burns, crush, grinder and other power tool injuries that require complex wound management.

After Hours Treatment 

OccMedCIC is available for follow up wound care. If your employee is injured after OccMedCIC working hours and is treated at an emergency department, then we will see the patient for follow up care to address work status.

Medical treatment and diagnostic imaging obtained in the Partners healthcare system can be easily accessed by OccMedCIC providers.

Orthopedic Needs

OccMedCIC fits patients for orthopedic braces in house and can coordinate appointments for specialized braces and casts.

Eye Injuries

OccMedCIC is prepared to handle a variety of work-related eye injuries. Our providers are adept at caring for abrasions to the eye and cornea caused by debris and other foreign bodies. When clinically indicated, we readily triage or refer to Mass Eye and Ear Infirmary as that facility is near our office.

Diagnostic Imaging

X-Rays

OccMedCIC utilizes high quality radiology at Massachusetts General Hospital. Workers who are triaged for an x-ray will walk, drive or be assisted with a wheel chair to the outpatient imaging department at Massachusetts General Hospital. Radiology reports can be available within a half hour of the x-ray.

MRIs 

OccMedCIC obtains MRI images with a variety of image providers at the discretion of the patient and insurance carrier. Shields MRI has many location in the greater Boston area.