1. 20% Decrease in WC Rates While NYSIF Slashes Assessment
The Rating Board has released new rates effective October 1st, 2007 reflecting a 20% discount based on Governor Spitzer's Workers Compensation Law Reforms. In addition, NYSIF is slashing the Rating Board's 15.5% assessment to 6.6%, based on the letigimate justification that the 2nd Injury Fund is now closed, and their accrued kitty is adequate to cover their liabilities until the eventual closing of the last claim, determined to be in 2063. This obviously gives NYSIF policyholders a leg up, and other types of insurances great competitive pressure. That has been calculated to be worth an 8.9% discount of the 15.5 assessment.
Actively Treating Employees' Depression Improves Work Productivity, Study Finds
Providing active, enhanced identification and treatment for depressed employees significantly improves their health and productivity, leading to lower costs for their employers, a study published in the Sept. 26 issue of the Journal of the American Medical Association found.
A National Institute of Mental Health (NIMH) study found that depression costs the U.S. economy tens of billions of dollars due largely to lost productivity, one of the most costly health problems for employers. But returns-on-investments were not clear up to now. This study finds that the additional hours worked by employees who were actively-treated in a proactive employer sponsored outreach and care management program were valued at $1,800. This exceeds the $100-$400 cost of outreach and care for the low-to-moderate intensity interventions ("Telephone Screening, Outreach, and Care Management for Depressed Workers and Impact on Clinical and Work Productivity Outcomes," is available at http://jama.ama-ssn.org/cgi/content/full/298/12/1401.)
Business Continuity & Emergency Preparedness
Are you ready? Go through these simple lists -
Emergency Supply Kit: http://www.ready.gov/business
Insurance Coverage Discussion Form:
Computer Hardware Inventory Form:
How much will it cost?
Sample Emergency Plan:
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DIRECT & INDIRECT ACCIDENT COST ANALYSIS TOOL
GCG is creating a simple, accurate and very insightful Injury Cost Analysis Tool. It showcases how the cost of your insurance, credit or debit modification, and indirect cost of accidents (administrative burden, diminished productivity, turnover, training, light duty, etc.), as it is represented either in the "Business Expense", or "Profit" side of your balance sheet. It derives the amount of revenues needed, to cover these costs. For more information, and a customized analysis, please contact Elsie Tai, at 800-922-2362x231 or
Human Factors Include Personality in Ergonomics
A recent ergonomic study finds that a mismatch in personality, and not just physiological work station design, and the job, increases ergonomic risk of injuries. For example, introverts who prefer routine tasks are further stressed and predisposed to ergonomic injury if their work requires dealing with different people and abstractions. The perception of a job as being too boring or too demanding are stressors that are dependent on the individual's personality and preferences for different types and levels of stimulus. For more information about ergonomic risks or analysis, contact
The health complications of obesity does translate to additional problems at work, including a higher rate of injuries, absences, longer recovery rates, productivity, etc. As per usual, the key is still to hire/fire by Job Descriptions specified by Essential Job Duties, and performance measures against these. Otherwise, to counter the effects of obesity on your staff and organization, the best thing to do is seriously help to promote better diet and exercise. There are checklists and helpful hints available. Contact
Study Shows Large Segment of Hotel Workers With Higher Injury Rates
A recent ergonomic study finds women and non-whites consistently had higher injury rates. Hispanic women had the highest injury rate. Female workers had a 5.3% injury rate versus 3.6% for men. The disparity was highest for the Stewards/Dishwashers job category (10.1% vs. 5.1%), followed by Cooks (6.1% vs. 5.1%), and Banquet Servers (2.6% vs. 1.8%). No such comparison was possible for the Housekeeper job category, as there were not enough men in that category for the study. These four categories make up 49% of the workforce at full-service hotels.
The study was a collaborative effort between a union organization UNITE HERE and academic researchers including 35 hotels from the largest chains (Hilton, Hyatt, Intercontinental, Marriott, and Starwood, involving16,000 people per year and 700 injuries based on OSHA records and hiring lists over a 2 year period.
Employer to Pay for PPE
This is hardly news to any modern operation. But OSHA has finally formalized the requirement that employer actually pay for the cost of required personal protective equipment, a reflection of the agency's lagging momentum at about a century behind. This may shake the world of Ebeneezer and other Dickinsonian operators, but most of our clients, this is a non-issue.
New OSHA Safety & Health Achievement Recognition Program
A revised compliance directive has provided for a pilot project allowing employers to use alternative criteria to participate in the current Occupational Safety and Health Administration Safety and Health Achievement Recognition Program. Incentives and support for continuous improvements in safety and health management systems are afforded employers who may not have been eligible for participation under previous STAR and other Program requirements.
Ignition Key not Enough for Lockout/Tagout
Simply removing the ignition key when servicing a vehicle may not be sufficient to comply with OSHA's lockout/tagout rule. A revised OSHA Directive addressing the control of hazardous energy when workers are maintaining motor vehicles including new technologies such as airbags, noting that hazardous energy can include mechanical motion, energy due to gravity or springs, battery-generated electrical energy, thermal energy, or chemical energy.
OSHA Focused Inspections Expanded
Focused inspection will now cover 7 general industry categories including landscape and horticultural services, oil and gas well drilling and services, preserved fruits and vegetables, primary metals and basic steel products, ship and boat building and repair, public warehousing and storage, and concrete and concrete products.
News From NYSIF and FEMA