WCRI Aging Worker Injury Study Goes Up Against My Assumptions From Experience
Andy over at WCRI was kind enough to provide me with a recent Flash Report to read over. The WCRI aging Worker injury study covers many of the subjects I have noticed in Workers Comp claim with aging worker injuries. Let us compare my study – that I l kept in my head to the study.
Dr. John Ruser (WCRI CEO) and Dr. Bogdan Savych performed the analysis. If you have not read any of Dr. Savych’s studies on what happens to injured employees AFTER a claim is over, you are missing out on groundbreaking info that may cause you to handle your claims or employees differently. Trust me, those studies are worth the purchase and read.
A 17-year-old study may experience a few changes to its conclusions. I will keep it as general here as possible.
NCCI has written a few studies on the aging workforce. I may circle back to their studies next week.
My Assumptions on the WCRI Aging Worker Injury Study
In 2002, I had written a report for a physical therapy firm that was attempting to find out if aging workers required any more or different types of physical therapy modalities.
For clarification, I assumed an aging worker at 62 years and older, the initial Social Security retirement age.
My discoveries were:
- Older workers did not have a higher rate of injury – they were more careful and followed safety directions
- Older workers as expected did have a longer healing period
- Their motivation for return to work was much higher – very loyal employees
- #3 above equalized #2 – older workers worked with their injuries even if on a Temporary Partial basis.
- Falls were the number one cause of injury
- Overall, the risk of hiring an aging worker was no more than the general public.
Recent WCRI study
I am going to quote out of their press release. Dr. John Ruser (who is a great person) made these comments:
“Our goal is to help system stakeholders consider possible challenges from changes in the age distribution of the workforce,” said John Ruser, president and CEO of WCRI. “This includes both the aging of the workforce and the entry of smaller groups of younger workers. Readers can use this information to create a balanced picture of how multiple metrics of workers’ compensation performance differ by age and how these metrics may vary with changes in external age-related factors shaping the population and the labor force.”
- Aging workers recovered slightly slower, but not enough to cause a concern
- The return to work period for older workers is not longer than the average injured worker
- Falls were #1 cause of injury – when I reached 55, my family Dr. gave me the falls at home are the #1 injury by people over 55. I felt older that day.
- #6 in my assumptions can be left to interpretation by reading the full study.
Good to Agree With WCRI
We were in agreed on most of the aging worker variables and comparisons. WCRI goes much further into the analysis. If you handle aging worker claims or are a risk manager with aging workers – the study is worth the more than reasonable $15. When you go to the WCRI website, they will also offer you a Medical Price Index study freebies. Check it out. At the end of the study, the injury rates by ages are broken down into every category one can think of in Workers’ Comp.
To learn more about this study or to purchase a copy, visit https://www.wcrinet.org/reports/wcri-flashreport-how-do-claim-costs-components-of-costs-and-worker-outcomes-differ-by-age
Even though my report was 17 years old, I think it agreed overall with the WCRI Aging Worker Injury Study.
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