CHICAGO, Nov. 17, 2010 /PRNewswire/ — The increase in prescription painkillers is prompting more states to conduct employee drug testing. Now 15 states have pro-drug testing laws that allow employers to test and terminate workers based on results. Yet, some employees who are testing positive for prescription meds went on them due to work-related injuries.
Recently, The New York Times featured Americans who suffered job loss due to positive drug tests (http://www.nytimes.com/2010/10/25/us/25drugs.html?_r=2&pagewanted=1&src=twr). Now pro-drug testing states are expanding testing to go beyond cocaine, marijuana and natural opiates – codeine and morphine – and into synthetic opiates such as OxyContin and Vicodin. Pro-drug testing laws give companies a benefit – a discount on their workers’ compensation premium – for screening employees. Advocates say that incentive supports a safer workplace; opponents say the real issue — dangerous drug dependency – isn’t being addressed or treated.
Now Americans who are jobless as a result of positive drug testing are asking why their companies didn’t take a more caring approach. One company has developed a program that takes care into consideration. Rising Medical Solutions’ (www.risingms.com) “Ask-A-Nurse” program adds a medical professional’s guidance back into the claims process, resulting in faster, healthier return-to-work cases and safer workplaces.
Companies refer cases to “Ask-A-Nurse” for several reasons:
- A patient’s care becomes static or worsens.
- A patient doesn’t understand the diagnosis or prescribed treatment.
- A patient’s drug use is potentially hazardous.
- A patient’s claim isn’t getting resolved in a reasonable timeframe.
Rising receives these types of cases and a nurse evaluates treatment guidelines, care provided and drugs prescribed. Often, the patient has been using opiates or short-acting narcotics for too long. Rising’s Physician Pharmacy Reviewer gathers the drug use data and provides a summary to the treating physician to discuss a healthier treatment plan, timeline and drug weaning program. This is just one way the “Ask-A- Nurse” program impacts costs.
“Runaway cases impact America’s whole healthcare cost structure,” says Jamey Masingill, Vice President of Claims, FirstComp Insurance Company. “Rising keeps an eye on the injured party’s long-term picture, returning to work stable and healthy.”
Rising’s Medical Review Unit Director, Anne Kirby cites “runaway” cases as destructive to all parties. “When cases go unmonitored there’s a higher propensity for rebound. Too often meds go unsupervised and an injured worker returns to work on heavy doses of narcotics, jeopardizing their own life and others.”
As Americans struggle to hold onto their jobs and healthcare coverage, medical oversight on workers’ compensation cases is imperative. Moreover, with healthcare reform, monitoring prescription use will become more necessary as additional people enter the system. So while losing a job is a difficult pill to swallow, it is perhaps even more difficult knowing that preventative tools are available that could have helped an employee avoid such a devastating loss.
About Rising Medical Solutions Inc.
Rising Medical Solutions is a national medical-financial solutions firm that provides medical bill review, hospital bill review and medical cost containment services to the group health, auto, workers’ compensation, and liability markets. Inc. magazine and the Private Company Index (PCI) rank the Chicago-based company as one of the fastest growing private enterprises in America.
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SOURCE Rising Medical Solutions Inc.
CONTACT: Leslie Yeransian of Rising Medical Solutions Inc., +1-617-733-1225, firstname.lastname@example.org
Web Site: http://www.risingms.com