Newsline No. 40-07
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May 8, 2007

The California Division of Workers' Compensation files final medical treatment guideline regulations with the Office of Administrative Law

The Division of Workers' Compensation (DWC) has filed its final regulations for the medical treatment utilization schedule (MTUS) with the Office of Administrative Law (OAL). The DWC has requested an effective date upon filing by the OAL with the secretary of state. The OAL will have 30 working days to review the proposed regulations before filing them with the secretary of state.

The proposed MTUS regulations, commonly referred to as medical treatment guidelines, are authorized by Labor Code section 5307.27, which requires the DWC administrative director to adopt a medical treatment utilization schedule. The proposed MTUS regulations define key terms used in the regulations, adopt the MTUS, adopt and incorporate by reference the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine's Occupational Medicine Practice Guidelines (ACOEM Practice Guidelines) into the MTUS, adopt acupuncture medical treatment guidelines into the MTUS, set forth the presumption of correctness of the MTUS, the burden of proof, and the strength of evidence rating methodology to evaluate specific medical treatment or diagnostic services, and create a medical evidence evaluation advisory committee which will advise the DWC medical director on matters concerning the MTUS for purposes of revising, updating and supplementing the MTUS as necessary.

A draft of the proposed MTUS regulations was initially published in the California Notice Register on Jul. 7, 2006. A public hearing took place on Aug. 23, 2006, at the state building in Oakland. The DWC revised the regulations several times based on comments. The last comment period closed Apr. 16, 2007.

The final proposed regulations and the final statement of reasons, as submitted to the OAL, are posted on the DWC Web site at http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/DWCPropRegs/MedicalTreatmentUtilizationSchedule/MTUS_regulations.htm.

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