April 29, 2005

Christine Baker

CHSWC to Study Fraud and Repackaged Drugs in Workers' Compensation

OAKLAND -- The California Commission on Health and Safety and Workers' Compensation (CHSWC) has approved studies relating to the identification and measurement of various types of fraud in the workers' compensation system.

A CHSWC study conducted by UC Berkeley and Boston University will estimate fraud and abuse related to lack of coverage and premium avoidance. Specific areas to be examined in the study include illegally uninsured employers, under-reporting of occupational injuries, and premium avoidance by insured employers. The findings from this study will be incorporated into the joint CHSWC/Fraud Assessment Commission (FAC) study on workers' compensation fraud that will measure the abuse and fraud in the system as well as examine medical provider and broker fraud.

CHSWC also voted to conduct a study about the impact of repackaged drugs on workers' compensation costs. These drugs have been purchased in bulk and repackaged into individual prescription sizes for dispensing in physicians' offices. The study will be conducted jointly by RAND and UC Berkeley using data from the California Workers' Compensation Institute (CWCI).

CHSWC, created by the workers' compensation reform legislation of 1993, is charged with overseeing the health and safety and workers' compensation systems in California and recommending administrative or legislative modifications to improve their operation. CHSWC was established to conduct a continuing examination of the workers' compensation system and of the state's activities to prevent industrial injuries and occupational diseases and to examine those programs in other states.

Information about CHSWC studies and CHSWC, is available at, by writing to Christine Baker, CHSWC Executive Officer, 1515 Clay Street, Room 901, Oakland, California 94612, or by calling (510) 622-3959.