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Suggestions for Effective Communication
with the Medical Community

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Communication is Crucial

Your ability to communicate effectively with your medical community is crucial to the success of the Return-to-Work Program. For your program to be successful, the following goals must be achieved:

  • Immediate Return of Injured Employees to Transitional or Regular Employment: Nationally, millions of dollars each year are wasted by employers paying time lost to employees who could actually go back to transitional or even regular duty within 24 hours of injury. This money could be saved if, at the time of injury, the medical provider was given a detailed description of the injured employee's job, or alternate tasks the employee could perform while recovering.
  • Rapid Progression from Transitional to Regular or Other Permanent Employment: Time-lost and related expenses can be dramatically reduced when frequent, ongoing provider contact moves injured employees as quickly as possible through transitional employment to regular or permanently modified employment.

  • Efficient Determination of Reasonable Accommodation Alternatives: If an employee will not be able to return to regular employment due to permanent or long-lasting limitations, significant dollars can be saved by quickly evaluating and (when appropriate) implementing permanent job accommodations, including internal transfers when feasible.

The Key to Working With The Medical Community

To achieve good communication with providers and to ensure the rapid return to work of your employees, you need to provide providers with good information about your Transitional Employment work assignments.

How Can You Get Your Medical Community To Cooperate With Your Return-To-Work Program?

The success of your Return-to-Work Program can only be ensured when your medical community:

  • Understands your commitment to facilitating rapid return of injured employees to transitional and/or permanent employment;

  • Understands that your commitment is to your employees, not just to dollar savings;

  • Understands exactly how each step of your plan works; and

  • Anticipates your active participation in the recovery and return to work of each of your injured employees.

The Key Elements To Provider Cooperation Are:

  1. Education of the medical community; and

  2. Frequent contact with its members.


Appendix CC: Steps for Obtaining Cooperation From The Employee’s Medical Provider

Appendix DD: Troubleshooting Guide