Coordinating Work-Related Injury Care with the Emergency Room

By Haley Bass | 02/23/2017

One of your employees is severely injured while working the night shift, so they go to an emergency room (ER) for treatment. Two days later they come back to work for their next shift and hand you a doctor’s note saying they can’t work for three months.

What’s wrong with this situation?

No communication. You didn’t know about your employee’s injury and were unable to start the workers’ compensation process. Your worker might be spending more time away from work than necessary, but you don’t know how the treating physician developed the treatment plan. These information gaps could lead to a higher claims cost, and even a potential lawsuit.

Luckily, there’s a solution. If you’re already working with Concentra, you can use our Emergency Department Partnership Program to stay in the loop if your worker has to go to the emergency room. Through this program, Concentra partners with selected local hospitals and health systems, so that we’re notified when one of your employees visits the emergency room for a work-related injury. After we get information about their visit, we share it with you to keep you updated on the injury care process.

How the Emergency Department Partnership Program Works

If your employee is injured at work after regular business hours, or injured badly enough that they need emergency care, they’ll need to go to the ER. Concentra’s Emergency Department Partnership Program keeps you updated when your employee needs emergency care by sharing information between the ER and Concentra.

After your employee is treated, the emergency room will send Concentra their visit information and your Injury Care Coordinator (ICC) will alert you about your employee’s visit. If your employee needs a follow-up visit, they will contact the injured employee to schedule a follow-up visit at a nearby Concentra location. At the visit, the treating Concentra physician will develop a treatment plan for the employee, then our staff will communicate the physician’s directives to you. We will also coordinate the workers’ compensation process with the payor and any other stakeholders.

Benefits of the Program

An emergency room is sometimes the best or only option for treatment, but their main goal is to quickly stabilize, diagnose, treat, and discharge the patient. They don’t usually set up follow-up visits or provide ongoing care, and common treatment plans can include rest and no work activity for days or weeks following an injury. Emergency rooms are also not likely to communicate information to the employer unless asked, which can take weeks. This delays the workers’ compensation process and increases costs from lost time. 

Concentra’s Emergency Department Partnership Program solves these problems through clear communication and coordination. Here are some of the benefits of using this program:

  • Decreased administrative costs by providing an Injury Care Coordinator to facilitate the continuity of care and return-to-work process
  • Reduced processing time for retrieving medical records from the hospital, which moves treatment along more quickly
  • Faster return-to-work with Concentra’s early intervention philosophy for injury treatment
  • Personalized care for employees

Less time spent juggling all the elements of workers’ compensation means you can stay focused on maintaining your business. You can trust that your employee is being treated expertly and efficiently while reducing healthcare costs.

The Emergency Department Partnership Program is currently limited to select locations. Contact your local account team to see if this program exists near you, or to learn how to set it up in your area.