Newsline No. 22-09 printer image Printer friendly

April 1, 2009

 

Division of Workers' Compensation launches "Bring 'em Back" campaign

Campaign aims to educate small employers about money available to bring employees back to the job or keep them working following an injury

The Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) has launched a campaign to help small employers bring their employees back to work or keep them working following workplace injuries. The “Bring em Back” campaign provides the specific information small employers need, in a user-friendly Web site, to apply for reimbursement for purchases they make to help employees stay working while they recover.

According to the RAND Corporation, a non-profit think tank, both employers and injured workers benefit when employees return to work quickly following a workplace injury. That’s why the workers’ comp reforms implemented in 2004 placed the emphasis on providing injured workers with sound medical treatment and getting them back to work as soon as possible.

It’s also why the state developed an incentive program that helps small employers accomplish this goal by providing up to $2,500 in reimbursements for dollars spent on workplace modifications that bring an injured employee back to the job.

Specifically, any employer with fewer than 50 full-time employees, whose employee was injured on the job after July 1, 2004, may qualify for reimbursement of up to:

·       $1,250 for workplace modifications that bring a temporarily disabled employee back to work
·       $2,500 for workplace modifications that bring a permanently disabled employee back to work

Reimbursement can be for any of the following expenses, provided they are prescribed by a physician or are reasonably required by work restrictions laid out in a medical report:

(1) Modification to the work site
(2) Equipment
(3) Furniture
(4) Tools
(5) Any other necessary costs reasonably required to accommodate your employee's restrictions.

Some examples of purchases the state has provided reimbursement for include:

·       A platform and extended eyepiece for a biological analyst

·       Custom knee pads for a tile setter

·       A computer keyboard tray and document holder for an office administrator.

While there are some restrictions in the program, getting reimbursement is as easy as filling out a few short forms and providing receipts.

In addition to providing reimbursement for purchases that bring an employee back to work or keep them on the job, the state’s return to work experts are available to provide consultations and presentations for employers or employer organizations on the subject.

Questions? Contact the Return to Work Reimbursement Program at (510) 286-6990 or DWCReturntoWork@dir.ca.gov.

On the Web at www.dwc.ca.gov. Click the “Bring ‘em Back” link in the right navigation pane.

 

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