Boca Raton, FL – NCCI recently released a new Insights report on Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) injuries in workers compensation.
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) injuries in workers compensation (WC) have recently attracted the attention of legislators and other system stakeholders. With more focus on compensating those who suffer from PTSD due to a work-related event, it’s important to understand:
- Why PTSD injuries in WC may become more prevalent
- What is the definition of PTSD injuries
- Who is affected
- Where these injuries impact the WC system
- Their potential cost
Why could PTSD injuries become more significant to WC?
While PTSD and other mental injuries are not common in WC, some experts believe the frequency may rise due to unreasonable workloads, long hours, and poor work-life balance.1 Several states are exploring expanding PTSD injury compensation, especially for first responders. These typically include firefighters, police officers, and emergency medical technicians, but could possibly expand to occupations such as correctional officers, emergency dispatch operators, and child protective services employees. Florida, for example, recently enacted Senate Bill 376, which provides workers compensation indemnity benefits to first responders suffering from PTSD under certain circumstances, and does not require a physical injury to have occurred.
Worker advocates and other groups have raised awareness of PTSD and emphasized the importance of reducing the stigma associated with mental injuries in WC2 that could increase the number of claims filed and deemed compensable. PTSD now has its own category in the American Psychiatric Association’s Diagnostic and Statistical Manual of Mental Disorders, 5th Edition, called “Trauma- and Stress-Related Disorders.” The previous edition classified PTSD as one type of anxiety disorder.
Click here to read the full report: NCCI: Post-Traumatic Stress Disorder in Workers’ Compensation