WCRI Preliminary Study Shows Workers Comp Chiropractic Care Savings
One of the subjects covered at the WCRI 2022 Conference was a savings element with workers comp chiropractic care for injured workers. Unfortunately, I glossed over a big statistic that was presented by Dongchun Wang, WCRI Economist on the first day of the conference.
If you are not receiving WCRI’s updates, you are definitely missing a huge amount of good data to just review for a few minutes each week – definitely worth signing up here and you receive a free report from the second you sign up. If you have a popup blocker on, then the free study offer may not appear.
Workers Comp Chiropractic Care – A Further Look
I was having my Keurig coffee two mornings ago when the phrase Workers Comp Chiropractic Care Savings popped into my head. I thought that chiropractors actually were always an expensive option.
If you want to see what was covered over the 1.5-day conference, check out these three articles from two weeks ago. They were typed live, so please excuse any errors, grammatical mistakes, etc.
Day 1 Morning – Dr. Hartwig’s 65 Slide Presentation on Inflation
Day 1 Afternoon – Dan Allen’s Astounding COVID-19 Stats On The Construction Industry
Day 2 Morning – The Numbers Say It All
Below is what I typed in for the session on treatment by Chiropractors. I bolded the part that I suddenly remembered from the conference. Please remember that the results are preliminary – the results could change over time as more data is analyzed. The study covered 28 states.
Patterns and Outcomes of Chiropractic Care
Chiropractors often participate in the delivery of physical medicine services to workers with low back pain in many states. It is important to know how they are involved and the outcomes of the care they provide. This is one of several preliminary studies we will be sharing at our annual conference, giving attendees a first look. Join WCRI Economist Dongchun Wang as she shares preliminary findings from her 28-state study Patterns and Outcomes of Chiropractic Care, which will address the following questions:
- How often do workers with low back pain receive chiropractic care across states?
- What are some reasons for the substantial interstate variation in the use of chiropractic care?
- How are chiropractors involved in delivering care?
- How do costs and temporary disability duration compare between low back pain claims with exclusive chiropractic care and those with non-chiropractic physical medicine care?
Minnesota uses chiropractic care more than any other state in Workers’ Comp – Minnesota allows employee choice of physician.
Chiropractic care is considered part of physical medicine treatment.
Difference Between Workers Comp Chiropractic Care and Physical Therapy
The difference between physical therapists and chiropractors – physical therapists formulate a treatment plan, using a diagnosis from a physician. Chiropractors formulate their own diagnosis and treatment plan.
States that have employer-controlled medical treatment had a lower amount of chiropractic care.
In Minnesota almost 35% of workers comp injuries were treated by chiropractors. 7% was the 28 state median.
Thirteen states had less than 5% of workers comp injuries with chiropractic care.
Overall provider patterns
71% did not involve chiropractors
17% mix between chiropractors and non-chiropractors
12% exclusively chiropractic treatment
Comparing Costs and TTD Duration
Chiropractic care is associated with a shorter length of TTD and lower medical costs than claims with other types of physical medicine – an interesting finding (preliminary only)
Question – Are Doctors’ costs and pharmacy fees figured into the physical medicine cost when compared to chiropractic care? Yes
I decided to go to the North Carolina Chiropractic Association website to see if I could find any studies there. I hit a paywall and needed to get the newsletter out.
The studies on Workers Comp chiropractic care will have to wait until next time. I will update this article or write a new one when WCRI updates the chiropractic study.
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