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NEWS Utah Labor Commission

FOR IMMEDIATE RELEASE

January 23, 2012

CONTACT: Elena Bensor
Community Relations /Public Information Officer
801-530-6918
elenabensor@utah.gov

State of Utah Receives an A+ Rating
for Their Worker’s Compensation Program in 2012 Evaluation Report

Salt Lake City, UT. January 19, 2012 -- No doubt about it, the cost of an occupational injury and illness can be high. Medical costs and loss of productivity, but also the significant impact an injury and loss of work can have on the injured worker and their families. But not all of it is bad news. Often, even after taking preventive measures to avoid an occupational injury, accidents in the workplace still happen and knowing that Utah is one of the best worker’s compensation programs in the Nation, is welcome news to Utah employers and their employees.

The Work Loss Data Institute (WLDI) a database development company, recently announced the release of its 2012 State Report Cards for Workers’ Compensation. Utah performed the best of all the states receiving an A+ along with Arkansas and Minnesota. The report comments that, “Utah uses evidence-based guidelines, and they have adopted the IAIABC Impairment Guides for rating permanent impairment. They have seen the number of lawsuits involving permanent impairment disputes drop by 99% since adoption of these guidelines”.

The WLDI State Report cards are based on 2009 data from OSHA forms 300 and 200 forming the basis for a state-by-state comparison of workers compensation analysis for the purpose of answering the question, “Who is doing well and why?” Rankings are based upon not only safety and severity, but whether workers get better and go back to work. Five different outcome measures are used for comparison among the states: 1) Incidence Rates; 2) Cases Missing Work; 3) Median Disability Durations; 4) Delayed Recovery Rate; and 5) Key Condition: Low back strain. These measures are used for analysis by WLDI to compare 10 years worth of data to track trends and rate each state. Ron Dressler, Director of the Industrial Accidents Division said: “I am extremely proud, as we all should be, of Utah's #1 ranking out of the 43 states that have had their workers' compensation programs reviewed. This is not only a testament to the hard work of all of the employees at the Utah Labor Commission and the Division of Industrial Accidents, but to all of our stakeholders who play a part in the workers' compensation process. Congratulations Utah!"

For more information on the Work Loss Data Institute and 2012 State Report Cards for Workers Comp, go to: http://www.worklossdata.com/PR_SRC2012.htm

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