HF 3873 – House and Senate votes
WORKERS’ COMPENSATION BILL
CHAMBER SUPPORTED/BILL PASSED; GOVERNOR SIGNED
YES is a vote for Minnesota Chamber position
The state’s workers’ compensation system replaces lost wages and provides medical care for injured employees to help them get well and back to work. The Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council negotiates all reforms of the workers’ compensation system before bringing a consensus bill to the Legislature. This longstanding practice has effectively resolved complex and controversial insurance matters for 25 years. The Minnesota Chamber, as a lead representative on the council, convened stakeholders including providers of medical care and companies paying for that care to enact significant reforms in 2018. This legislation streamlines provisions of care by implementing fee schedules pegged to Medicare reimbursement rates. It increases benefits to injured workers, achieves significant cost-savings for employers by moving from typical medical-price inflation to the Medicare rate of inflation, and reduces administrative friction for ambulatory surgical centers, hospitals and insurers. The change from medical price inflation to Medicare inflation alone will provide tens of millions of dollars of savings annually to employers.
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As part of the reforms, the council also approved an agreement regarding how the workers’ compensation system supports first-responders and other Minnesotans experiencing post-traumatic stress disorder. Although the vast majority of Minnesota’s first-responders are employed in the public sector rather than by the Chamber’s members, we were pleased to help resolve this serious workplace need given the role of the Chamber in setting workers’ compensation policy.
We thank Representative Tony Albright, R-Prior Lake, and Senator Paul Utke, R-Park Rapids, for leading the bill through each body and championing the important role of the Workers’ Compensation Advisory Council.
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