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“Nurse triage ensures that when an employee has a work-related illness or injury they receive the right care at the right time, in the right setting.” (Bravo, 2012)
IN THE UNITED STATES
It is estimated that annually $117 billion dollars are spent on wage replacement from employee absence due to illness and workers’ compensation. Overall, U.S. workforce illness costs $576 billion per year in sick days, lost productivity, “presenteeism, medical treatment, and pharmacy related costs. (Japsen, 2012)
As a result, employers are constantly searching for ways to reduce workers compensation costs.
One solution that has become increasingly utilized is nurse triage.
BENEFITS OF TELEPHONE TRIAGE
Rarely can a supervisor properly assess and direct a sick or injured employee on what to do for their ailment. However, with a simple phone call, employees can talk to a telephone triage nurse. This process offers several key benefits including:
- A timely and accurate reporting of injuries
- Providing care and treatment appropriate to the severity of the condition
- Qualified Registered Nurses
- Industry-Standard Protocols
- Increased use of in-network providers due to recommendations from the nurse on call
Large companies and/or those with late-night shifts and varying production hubs can benefit tremendously from the 24/7 availability of telephone triage nurse services. By offering medical management from onset of the ailment, nurse triage on-call can help reduce days lost from work, lower the cost of indemnity payments, and lower the cost of medical care.
Supervisors benefit, too, as nurse triage relieves them of the burden of making medical decisions, and decreases their workload by reducing paperwork and forms.
By providing cost savings and overall improved claim outcomes, telephone nurse triage provides employers with a sensible solution to reduce workers’ compensation expenses.
Bravo, E. (2012) Nurse Triage, for Workers’ Comp Injuries, Who Knew? WorkCompWire.com. Retrieved May 8, 2013 from http://www.workcompwire.com/2012/10/emil-j-bravo-nurse-triage-for-workers-comp-injuries-who-knew/
Japsen, B. (2012). US Workforce Illness Costs $576B Annually From Sick Days To Workers Compensation. Forbes.com. Retrieved May 8, 2013 from http://www.forbes.com/sites/brucejapsen/2012/09/12/u-s-workforce-illness-costs-576b-annually-from-sick-days-to-workers-compensation/
Shafer, S. (2012) How Nurse Triage and Nurse Case Management Work Together to Reduce Workers Compensation Costs. AMAXX Workers Comp Resource Center. Retrieved May 8, 2013 from http://blog.reduceyourworkerscomp.com/2012/01/nurse-triage-and-nurse-case-management-work-together-to-reduce-workers-compensation-costs/