Workers’ Comprehensive  News and views in workers’ comp

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Jul 2022

Medmonitor
FDA Recalls Morphine Sulfate ER Due to Potentially Deadly Label Mix-Up

A mix-up between 30 mg and 60 mg tablets could cause severe adverse events.

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This Month's Must Read
The Cannabis Question: Marijuana and Workplace Safety?

With greater legalization and public approval, the question of safety grows more important.

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Clinical Insights
Telemedicine Patterns of Use and Reimbursement

A WCRI report explores telemedicine utilization.

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Facts & Figures
Interstate Variation and Trends in Workers’ Comp Drug Payments

WCRI explores how drug payments varied across 28 states for key drug therapy groups.

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Innovation
New Drug in Development Could Help Patients with Spinal Cord Injuries

AZD1236, currently in Phase 2 trials, has shown an 80% preservation in nerve function following spinal cord injury.

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Healthe Developments
No “Set It and Forget It” for Pharmacy Trends, and How Automation Can Lend a Helping Hand

Silvia Sacalis and Tate Rice take turns in WorkCompWire’s Leaders Speak Series.

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Jun 2022

Medmonitor
Walmart Recalls Supplement for Joint Pain Due to Hidden Drug Ingredients

Artri Ajo King contains undeclared diclofenac, creating safety concerns.

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This Month's Must Read
Out of Stock: Medical Supply Chain Shortages Impacting Worker’s Comp

Ancillary medical product and service shortages and how to manage them.

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Clinical Insights
Gabapentin-Involved Overdose Deaths on the Rise

A new report from the CDC found that 10% of overdose deaths in 2019-2020 involved gabapentin.

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Legislation & Policy
Rhode Island Legalizes Recreational Marijuana

A total of 19 states now allow for recreational marijuana in adults aged 21 and older.

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Healthe Developments
Why Novel Physical Therapy Strategies are Getting Attention from Workers’ Comp

Risk and Insurance® magazine speaks to industry professionals, including Healthe’s Director of Product Management, Tate Rice.

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May 2022

Medmonitor
FDA Issues Warning for Consumer Products with Hidden Pain Medications

Undeclared muscle relaxants and anti-inflammatory drugs could interact with a patient’s care.

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This Month's Must Read
Giving Notice: How Workforce Attrition Impacts Workers’ Comp

Millions of workers are changing occupations, leading to ripple effects for comp.

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Clinical Insights
IQVIA Reports on Trends and Future Outlook for Drug Utilization and Spend

Spending and utilization are returning to pre-pandemic levels, with biologics growing in prominence.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
FDA Considers Requiring Mail-Back Envelopes for Opioid Prescriptions

The public comment period is underway for this action, which could help with safer drug disposal.

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Healthe Developments
Silvia Sacalis to Join Panel Presentation at PRIMA 2022

Healthe’s VP of Clinical Services will join a discussion on post-COVID lessons for workers’ comp.

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Apr 2022

Medmonitor
Phase 2 Trials for Non-Opioid Pain Medication Deliver Promising Results

VX-548 delivered significant improvements in pain with few adverse events.

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This Month's Must Read
Out of Balance: Workforce Gender Disparities and What They Mean for Workers’ Comp

Women workers were more adversely impacted by the pandemic and the recession.

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Marijuana Developments
Positive Marijuana Drug Screenings Reach All Time High

Quest Diagnostics reports increased positivity rates for marijuana in employee drug screenings.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Authorizes Second COVID-19 Booster Dose for Special Populations

Adults aged 50 and older and immunocompromised individuals may receive a second booster dose.

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Industry Developments
NCCI Reports on Return-to-Work Strategies

Carriers share their thoughts on successful RTW programs.

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Mar 2022

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Fleqsuvy for Spasticity

A new muscle relaxant for the treatment of spasticity, including from spinal cord injuries.

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This Month's Must Read
2022 Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey Report

Nearly 500 stakeholders share their thoughts on industry challenges and priorities.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
CDC to Update Opioid Guideline

Proposed changes are open to public comment until April 11th.

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Legislation & Policy
First Responder PTSD Bills Return to the Forefront

After a drop in activity due to the pandemic, five states are now considering legislation.

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Healthe Developments
Five Things to Know About Workers’ Compensation Pharmacy Services

Healthe’s VP of Industry and State Affairs, Sandy Shtab, joined an educational webinar from IAIABC.

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Feb 2022

Medmonitor
FDA Issues Warning for Dental Problems with Dissolvable Buprenorphine Products

Buprenorphine is an opioid used to treat pain, as well as opioid-use disorder.

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This Month's Must Read
Classification Complications: Will Gig Workers Enter the Workers’ Comp Market?

Legislation could potentially reclassify gig workers as employees entitled to workers’ comp.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Fully Approves Moderna Vaccine & Expands Veklury’s Treatment Range

Drug advancements surrounding the prevention and treatment of COVID-19.

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Legislation & Policy
Marijuana: States Move Forward Medically and Recreationally, But Oppose Reimbursement in Comp

Since the start of 2022, at least 10 states are considering some form of marijuana legislation.

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Healthe Developments
Claims Adjusters Are the Future Leaders of Workers’ Comp: How Can We Nurture Their Success?

Healthe’s Director of Product Management talks to Risk & Insurance on how to attract and retain talent in the workers’ comp industry.

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Jan 2022

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Yusimry as a Biosimilar to Humira

This autoimmune drug was approved for various arthritic and autoimmune diseases.

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This Month's Must Read
The Top Priorities of the Workers’ Comp Industry for Future Resiliency

The initial results from a collaborative survey between Healthe and Risk & Insurance.®

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COVID-19 Developments
Additional Vaccine Candidate Performs Well in Clinical Trials

Phase 3 trials for NVX-CoV2373 across 30,000 people found this vaccine candidate to be safe and effective for the prevention of COVID-19.

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Clinical Insights
CDC Updates Isolation and Quarantine Period for COVID-19

New five-day rules are recommended, with variation depending upon vaccination status.

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Industry Developments
The Great Resignation Continues to Impact Workforce Dynamics

The Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that 4.5 million employees quit their jobs in November 2021.

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Healthe Developments
4 Ways to Manage Medical Supply Chain Disruption in Workers’ Comp

Healthe’s SVP of Product Strategy and Innovation, Kristine Kennedy, discusses this topic with Risk & Insurance magazine.

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Dec 2021

Medmonitor
COVID-19 Pill Approval and More Updates

Molnupiravir, Paxlovid, and AZD7442 have shown promise in Phase 3 trials.

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This Month's Must Read
The Long Haul: Chronic Health Complications of COVID-19

Those previously infected by the virus may face long-term health complications.

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Clinical Insights
Can Virtual Reality Help with Pain Management?

A new study found that VR sessions averaged a 40% reduction in pain and decreased opioid use.

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Legislation & Policy
Federal Judges Try to Block Vaccine Mandates

Rulings from U.S. District Courts have impeded vaccine requirements among certain workers.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Authorizes COVID-19 Booster Shots for All Adults

All adults may now receive a booster shot of any COVID-19 vaccine.

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Nov 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Zimhi and Seglentis

A new naloxone drug and a new opioid-NSAID combination.

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This Month's Must Read
Sickness and Society: The Future of Infectious Disease in the Workplace

Strategies for a safer, healthier workforce amid COVID-19 and beyond.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Authorizes Booster Shots for Moderna and J&J Vaccines

All COVID-19 vaccines now have emergency use authorization for a booster dose.

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Marijuana Updates
Cannabis in the Workplace on the Rise

One-third of employees have witnessed cannabis use during work hours.

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Industry Developments
Texas Telemedicine Report

Pre-pandemic, 951 claims received telemedicine, jumping to 21,000 during the pandemic.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at WCI & SAWCA

Visit Healthe at WCI booth #913! Plus, a recap of a SAWCA roundtable, featuring Sandy Shtab.

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Oct 2021

Medmonitor
New Drugs, Generics, and a COVID-19 Treatment Update

A new migraine medication, various generics, and more.

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This Month's Must Read
The Long Haul: Chronic Health Complications of COVID-19

Long-term health impacts of COVID-19 can complicate claims

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Clinical Insights
Topical Analgesics See Increase in Utilization

A WCRI study found that in some states 17% of workers receive topical analgesics.

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Industry Trends
Take the 2021 Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey

Take our survey and share your thoughts on where the industry is headed.

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Healthe Developments
Healthe Leaders to Speak at Upcoming Virtual Conferences

Take part in our virtual speaking sessions at PRIMA and Comp Laude!

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Sep 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Pfizer COVID-19 Vaccine, Booster Shots on the Way

The Pfizer vaccine receives full FDA approval, while a new EUA authorizes booster shots for certain populations.

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This Month's Must Read
Applying AI to Leverage the Value of Unstructured Claims Data

Healthe’s Director of Enterprise Analytics discusses in WorkCompWire how natural language processing can assist with claim review, population management, and more.

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Clinical Insights
WCRI Publishes Report on Off-Label Gabapentinoid Use

Less than 1% of gabapentin prescriptions were prescribed for an FDA-approved diagnosis.

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Legislation & Policy
White House Issues Vaccine Mandate

All federal employees are impacted, as are companies with 100 or more employees.

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Healthe Developments
Connect with Healthe at the 2021 National Comp Conference

Join our educational session on infectious disease safety in the workplace, and don’t miss a chance to take part in our industry survey!

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Aug 2021

Medmonitor
New Generic Approvals

The FDA approved first-time generics for Xeljanz, two COPD medications, and more.

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This Month's Must Read
In Claims Management, Centralized Data Means Empowered Decisions

Healthe’s Director of Product Management explains how centralized data helps claims professionals.

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Clinical Insights
How Opioid Policy Impacts Opioid Utilization and Disability

A new WCRI report explores the impact recent opioid legislation has had on injured worker care.

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COVID-19 Developments
The Early Impact of COVID-19 on Workers’ Comp Claims

Another WCRI report looks at non-COVID-19 claims with injuries in the first two quarters of 2019 and 2020.

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Healthe Developments
Clinical Minute Video Series

Not enough time for white papers or industry reports? Check out our Clinical Minute videos!

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Jul 2021

Medmonitor
FDA and CDC: Vaccinated Adults Will Not Need COVID-19 Booster Shots

A joint statement announces that at this time, vaccinated adults are protected from the Delta variant.

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This Month's Must Read
Home Alone: The Mental Health Impact of Working from Home

Extensive isolation and unique stressors may impact the mental health of remote workers.

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Clinical Insights
AMA Updates Impairment Rating Guidelines for the First Time Since 2008

Changes center around improving the assessment of mental and behavioral impairment.

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Legislation & Policy
More Recreational Marijuana Legalization, More Positive Workplace Drug Tests

Connecticut legalizes recreational use, and NCCI expects even more states to follow suit.

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Healthe Developments
Silvia Sacalis to Join Panel Presentation at Florida RIMS Conference

Join our VP of Clinical Services on July 29th for a discussion on care and program considerations for underrepresented populations.

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Jun 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves First New Weight Loss Drug Since 2014, Issues EUA for COVID-19 Antibody

Wegovy (semaglutide) and sotrovimab will soon be available.

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This Month's Must Read
Empowering the Patient as a Mitigator of Claims Complexity

How to leverage the patient’s influence over care outcomes.

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Clinical Insights
Interstate Variation and Trends in Workers’ Comp Drug Payments

A new flash report from the WCRI highlights trends in drug utilization.

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Legislation & Policy
Mental Health Injuries Gain Momentum in Workers’ Comp

Corrections officers in Nebraska benefit from a new law; will healthcare workers in Connecticut join them?

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Healthe Developments
5 Ways We’re Innovating the Digital Experience for Claims Professionals

Check out Healthe’s latest featured article with WorkCompWire

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Conference Updates
Silvia Sacalis to Join Panel Presentation at FERMA 2021

Join our VP of Clinical Services on July 15th for a discussion on underrepresented populations in workers' comp.

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May 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Kloxxado for Opioid Overdose

A new 8 mg naloxone nasal spray will soon be available, which is the largest naloxone dose approved by the FDA to date.

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This Month's Must Read
RxInformer Summer 2021 Edition Now Available

The latest issue of Healthesystems’ biannual clinical journal covers trending and influential topics in workers’ comp.

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Healthe Developments
Healthe Leaders in the Media

Our VP of Clinical Services comments on opioid alternatives, and our AVP of Advocacy & Compliance discusses social media in the workplace.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Revokes Emergency Use Authorization for Bamlanivimab for COVID-19

Due to mutating viral strains, the potential benefits of this COVID-19 drug no longer outweigh the risks.

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Legislation & Policy
Department of Labor Hints at Changes to Worker Classification

While many states are making decisions regarding gig workers, federal action could soon change things.

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Apr 2021

Medmonitor
FDA and CDC Recommend Resuming Use of Johnson & Johnson COVID-19 Vaccine

After reviewing six rare cases of blood clots after 7 million doses, current data indicates the vaccine is safe.

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This Month's Must Read
Making Telemedicine Work for Workers’ Comp

Applications, benefits and tips for success.

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Legislation & Policy
Provider Choice Bills Introduced Across the Country

More states consider allowing injured workers to choose their treating physician.

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Marijuana Updates
Recreational Marijuana Legalization Blazes On

In two months, three states legalized recreational marijuana, and more could soon follow.

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Healthe Developments
Developing and Advancing Meaningful Connection in a Virtual Work Environment

Join Healthe’s Heather Stempien and Sandy Shtab for a panel presentation with IAIABC on April 28th!

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Mar 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves New Acetaminophen Injection Dose

A new 500mg injection will soon be available.

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This Month's Must Read
2021 Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey Report

Over 600 stakeholders shared their thoughts on top industry challenges.

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Clinical Insights
COVID-19-Related Stress Among Emergency Department Workers

Among 1,600 emergency department workers, 46% had burnout symptoms.

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Legislation & Policy
New York and New Hampshire Rule in Favor of Marijuana Reimbursement

Both State Supreme Courts ruled in favor of reimbursement.

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COVID-19 Developments
FDA Issues EUA for Third COVID-19 Vaccine

The single-dose Janssen vaccine was analyzed in a trial of 39,000 patients.

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Feb 2021

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Posimir for Post-Surgical Pain Relief

A novel bupivacaine formulation works as a 72-hour local anesthetic following shoulder surgery.

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This Month's Must Read
Powering People with Technology to Close Gaps Across the Life of a Claim

Healthe leaders share their thoughts with Risk & Insurance®

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Clinical Insights
Xeljanz Could Increase the Risk of Heart Problems and Cancer

New data from a safety trial creates concern surrounding the rheumatoid arthritis drug.

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Legislation & Policy
Wisconsin Announces Plan to Lower Prescription Drug Costs

State-led efforts to combat the drug price issue continue to emerge across the nation.

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Healthe Developments
IAIABC Names Sandy Shtab Vice Chair of Associate Member Council

Healthe’s AVP of Advocacy & Compliance will provide guidance on workers’ comp regulations.

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Healthe Developments
A Disruptive Year for Workers’ Comp: Insights from the 2020 Industry Survey

Join us for a panel discussion on March 10th as part of the NWCDC Digital Session Series.

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Jan 2021

Medmonitor
COVID-19 Mutations Impact Testing

False negatives may be reported due to genetic variations of the virus.

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This Month's Must Read
Mobile Technology Is on Workers’ Comp Experts’ Minds: Here Are 3 Reasons They’re Right

Kristine Kennedy, SVP of Product Strategy and Innovation, talks to Risk & Insurance®

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Clinical Insights
COVID-19’s Impact on Opioid Prescribing Trends

A new report from IQVIA found that national MME dropped 17% from 2019 to 2020.

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Legislation & Policy
Worker Classification Debate Continues Across the Country

The Department of Labor issued a new rule while special interest groups push for regulatory change.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
The Department of Justice Sues Walmart Over Role in Opioid Crisis

Alleged violations of the Controlled Substances Act could result in billions of dollars in penalties.

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Healthe Developments
Top 10 Disruptors of 2020 for the Workers’ Comp Industry

Initial insights from Healthesystems’ annual industry survey.

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Dec 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Authorizes Two COVID-19 Vaccines, At-Home Test, More Treatments

Vaccine candidates from Pfizer-BioNTech and Moderna received EUAs, as did the first at-home test that delivers results in 30 minutes, and two treatments for the virus.

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This Month's Must Read
The Patient Experience in Perspective: Applying Empathy to the Work Comp Claims Process

Navigating the workers’ comp process can be daunting for patients, and empathy can go a long way in improving outcomes.

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Clinical Insights
IQVIA Reports on Telemedicine Trends and Opportunities

A new report explores how COVID-19 has impacted telemedicine, as well as opportunities for expansion.

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Legislation & Policy
New York Prepares to Launch New Claim Portal

Stakeholders will soon experience a streamlined digital process for managing claims.

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Healthe Developments
Dr. Robert Goldberg Discusses Congressional Marijuana Vote with WorkersCompensation.com

Healthesystems’ Chief Medical Officer comments on the U.S. House’s approval of marijuana decriminalization.

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Nov 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Veklury for COVID-19, Issues EUA for Bamlanivimab

Veklury is approved for hospitalized patients, while bamlanivimab is being investigated in mild-to-moderate cases of COVID-19.

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This Month's Must Read
Legalization and Decriminalization: Marijuana and More

Across the nation, not only is marijuana growing more accepted, but so are other drugs like psilocybin and MDMA.

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Clinical Insights
COVID-19 Infection Risks and Mental Health Impact Among Grocery Workers

Direct customer exposure is associated with a five-fold risk of infection, while less social distancing in the workplace is tied to depression and anxiety.

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Legislation & Policy
California Voters Keep Rideshare Drivers as Independent Contractors

The election saw passage of a measure to exempt rideshare drivers from employee status, impacting benefits and more.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at NWCDC 2020

Join our VP of Clinical Services, Silvia Sacalis, for a digital presentation on employing empathy within workers’ comp programs on December 9th!

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Oct 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Requires Boxed Warning Update for Benzodiazepines

Even at recommended doses, benzodiazepine use can lead to misuse, abuse, and addiction.

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This Month's Must Read
3 Stakeholder Research Findings That Can Improve Patient Experience and Program Outcomes

User research indicates that patients face difficulty with the intake process, getting key claim information, and more.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
Purdue, OxyContin Manufacturer, Loses Federal Case and Will Shut Down

The drug manufacturer is pleading guilty and paying out billions.

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Legislation & Policy
California COVID-19 Report

COVID-19 claim data through October 5th has been captured and broken down by industry, age, region, and more.

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Spotlight
Celebrating American Pharmacists Month

Learn how our pharmacists make a difference for injured worker patients, and what drives their hard work

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Sep 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Two New Opioids

Olinvyk injections and Qdolo oral solution are approved for the management of acute pain.

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This Month's Must Read
Side Effects: COVID-19-Related Healthcare and Pharmacy Trends

With the pandemic disrupting the healthcare system, how has workers’ comp been impacted?

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Clinical Insights
WCRI Issues Report on Physical Therapy

Data from 26,000 claims finds that early physical therapy reduces costs and disability duration.

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Legislation & Policy
U.S. Executive Order Signed for Telemedicine

A wide-sweeping order on national telehealth policy requires federal agencies to begin making plans for change.

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COVID-19 Developments
Florida COVID-19 Report

Data from nearly 12,000 COVID-19 claims breaks down coverage among industries, telemedicine insights, and more.

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Healthe Developments
Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey

2020 has been a year of disruption, and we want to know what the industry thinks about COVID-19, telehealth, opioids, AI, and more!

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Aug 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Issues Naloxone Recommendations for Opioids and OUD Drugs

The FDA recommends healthcare professionals co-prescribe the opioid overdose reversal drug with all opioid prescriptions.

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This Month's Must Read
Overcoming Obstacles to Patient Recovery Amid a Global Pandemic

Healthesystems’ VP of Clinical Services addresses COVID-19 disruptions to workers’ comp, along with helpful strategies

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Clinical Insights
American Medical Association Publishes Opioid Task Force Report

AMA hopes to shift from a crisis-reaction framework to a more holistic model that prevents overdose while helping pain patients receive care.

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Legislation & Policy
Connecticut Enacts Major COVID-19 Presumption

Beyond first responders and healthcare workers, essential workers including grocery store workers are now covered by workers’ comp.

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COVID-19 Developments
Returning to Work in the COVID-19 Era

With cases increasing as individuals return to work, injured workers face barriers to care, risk of infection, and more.

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Healthe Developments
Driving a More Personalized Claim Experience in a Digital World

As complex claims continue to impact workers’ comp, our new article in WorkCompWire addresses the need for early warnings and clinical guidance.

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Jul 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Hulio for Rheumatoid Arthritis and More

Subcutaneous injections of the new biologic, adalimumab-fkjp, were approved for seven indications.

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This Month's Must Read
A New Routine: The Growth of Complex Claims and How to Manage Them

Strategies for anticipating and mitigating complex claim risks.

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Clinical Insights
American Medical Association Asks CDC to Revise Opioid Guidelines

The AMA suggests that prescription medications are no longer a significant factor in the opioid epidemic, and that opioid prescription limits should change.

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Legislation & Policy
States Pass COVID-19 Liability Limitations

Arkansas and Louisiana enacted policies to protect businesses from civil liability stemming from COVID-19 exposure.

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Industry Developments
WCRI Reports on Interstate Variation Trends in Drug Payments

Data from 28 states years found that NSAIDs and dermatological agents are seeing growth in spending.

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Jun 2020

COVID-19: Hydroxychloroquine and Remdesivir Updates

The malaria drug loses an EUA for COVID-19, while the FDA warns of drug interactions that can reduce antiviral effectiveness.

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This Month's Must Read
Growing Pains: The Shift from Opioids to Other Pain Therapies

With opioid utilization decreasing, what concerns do other pain therapies pose?

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Clinical Insights
WCRI Publishes Medical Price Index

With data from 36 states across 12 years, this report highlights the differences in prices paid for medical services across the nation.

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Legislation & Policy
Washington Issues Guidelines on COVID-19 Masks for Workers

Occupations are divided into risk categories where each category must utilize appropriate face coverings, masks, or respirators.

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COVID-19 Developments
Employee Stress and Mental Health When Returning to Work

The National Safety Council discusses managing employee anxiety stemming from COVID-19 when returning to work.

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May 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Elyxyb Oral Solution for Migraines

Elyxyb (celecoxib) is an NSAID for the acute treatment of migraine with or without aura.

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This Month's Must Read
Live Better, Heal Better: Employee Wellness in Workers' Comp

How comorbidities, fatigue, and mental health impact claims management.

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Clinical Insights
Remdesivir a Potential Treatment for COVID-19?

The FDA allows emergency use in response to positive trials, but more research is needed.

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COVID-19 Developments
IQVIA Reports on Healthcare Shifts in the COVID-19 Era

A new study explores patients’ use of health services, the impact on medicine use, research activity, and more.

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Legislation & Policy
California Executive Order Greatly Expands COVID-19 Presumption

Many states expanded workers’ comp for COVID-19, but California casts a wider net.

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Apr 2020

Medmonitor
COVID-19 Updates from the FDA

New developments with diagnostic testing and the use of chloroquine and hydroxychloroquine.

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This Month's Must Read
Sandy Shtab: Regulatory Acceleration in Response to COVID-19

Healthesystems’ AVP of Advocacy & Compliance discusses regulatory action related to COVID-19 with WorkCompWire.

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Clinical Insights
Could Convalescent Plasma Treat COVID-19?

The FDA, JAMA, and others think blood from those who recovered from COVID-19 could benefit those with the illness.

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Legislation & Policy
More States Make COVID-19 Compensable in Workers’ Comp

With frontline workers at risk, states are expanding coverage to healthcare workers, first responders, and other frontline workers.

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Healthe Developments
Silvia Sacalis: 3 Evolving Clinical Trends in Workers’ Comp

Healthesystems’ VP of Clinical Services discusses population trends, non-opioid pain therapies, and comorbidities with WorkCompWire.

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Mar 2020

COVID-19 Developments
Keep Track of COVID-19 Developments

Healthesystems has created a developments webpage to track updates impacting workers’ comp.

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Medmonitor
FDA Approves Two Migraine Drugs and Two NSAIDs

Anjeso and a new Advil formulation target pain, while Nurtec™ and Vyepti™ target migraines.

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This Month's Must Read
2020 Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey

Healthesystems collaborated with Risk & Insurance to survey 669 workers’ comp professionals on top trends and challenges.

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Clinical Insights
JAMA Compares Effectiveness of Treatment Pathways for Opioid Use Disorder

A study of 41,000 adults finds that only treatment with buprenorphine or methadone reduced risk of overdose.

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Legislation & Policy
Embracing Telehealth in Reaction to COVID-19

Several state workers’ comp programs are relaxing telehealth rules to promote social distancing.

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Healthe Developments
Sandy Shtab Featured in IAIABC Member Spotlight

Healthesystems’ AVP of Advocacy & Compliance discusses industry challenges, special initiatives, and more in a video spotlight.

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Feb 2020

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Diazepam Nasal Spray and Fast Tracks New Drug for Spinal Cord Injury

A new seizure drug has been approved, and a nerve growth drug advances in clinical trials.

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This Month's Must Read
4 Regulatory Trends to Watch Out for in 2020

What will 2020 hold for marijuana acceptance, employee misclassification, formularies, and AI?

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Clinical Insights
WCIRB Publishes Physical Medicine Report

An analysis of 1.5 million claims found early physical therapy lowers odds of opioid use by 14%.

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Legislation & Policy
Marijuana Bills Could Create Protections for Employment Discrimination

Testing positive for marijuana use could one day no longer prohibit employment.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
An Opioid Snapshot for 2020

With a flurry of opioid developments lately, what does the big picture look like?

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Jan 2020

Medmonitor
Three Drug Approvals and a Safety Warning

Migraine, arthritis, and insomnia drug approvals, and a gabapentinoids safety warning.

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Clinical Insights
Psilocybin for Mental Health Disorders?

Does the active ingredient in magic mushrooms have a future in mental health?

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Clinical Insights
MDMA Gains Steam for PTSD Treatment

Phase 3 studies are underway, and current research sees potential for MDMA in psychotherapy.

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Clinical Insights
Lavender Administration Shows Promise for Anxiety

A recent meta-analysis of over 100 trials and studies found lavender to significantly reduce anxiety levels.

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Keeping an Eye Out for CBD

With CBD products widely available and advertised for so many ailments, claimants could be using CBD without insurers knowing.

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Dec 2019

Medmonitor
New Drug Developments Impacting Comp

A biosimilar to Humira is approved, the FDA Fast Tracks a PTSD drug, and more.

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This Month's Must Read
Questioning Costs: A Field Guide to Fee Schedules

Understand how prices are set for medical equipment and services, and how to scrutinize those costs.

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Clinical Insights
How Declining Opioid Use Impacts Claims and Outcomes

According to the CWCI, reduced opioid utilization from 2010-2017 saved $6.5 billion in California comp costs.

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Legislation & Policy
Minnesota Proposes PTSD Treatment Guidelines

Beyond compensability, Minnesota considers rules for evaluation, treatment planning, acceptable psychotherapies, and more.

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Healthe Developments
Healthe in the Media

Workers’ comp publications cover Healthesystems content surrounding aging physicians, successful return-to-work programs, and more.

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Nov 2019

Medmonitor
Recalls Impacting Workers’ Comp

A previous gastrointestinal drug recall expands, while a new recall for an anxiety drug is issued.

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Rehabilitating Your Rehab Program: Better Metrics for Physical Medicine

How more dynamic data can illuminate program performance to empower care delivery

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Clinical Insights
HHS Publishes Opioid Tapering and Discontinuation Guideline

The guideline covers a wide range of relevant topics, including pain, dosing, dangerous co-prescribing, comorbidities, and more.

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Legislation & Policy
More States Scrutinize Gig Economy Classifications

Shortly after California made strides on employee classification for gig economy jobs, New Jersey and New York have taken action.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
The Economic Impact of Non-Medical Opioid Use

The Society of Actuaries published a report that claims the economic burden of the opioid epidemic was $631 billion from 2015-2018.

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Oct 2019

Medmonitor
Multiple Companies Recall Ranitidine Hydrochloride Due to Contamination

Indicated for various gastrointestinal concerns, these recalls could impact certain workers’ comp patients.

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Clearing the Air: Marijuana Considerations for Workers’ Comp

A new white paper explores clinical, legislative, workplace safety, and PBM considerations surrounding marijuana.

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Clinical Insights
Social Determinants of Health

PwC explores how social factors impact chronic health conditions.

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Legislation & Policy
California Gig Law to Reclassify Contractors as Employees

This reclassification will entitle millions of workers to benefits previously withheld, including workers’ comp.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at NWCDC 2019

Join Healthesystems at booth #1922, at an educational presentation, or by taking our industry survey with Risk & Insurance.

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Sep 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Postpones Opioid Approval Decision

NKTR-181 (loxicodegol) was to receive an approval decision by August 29th, but a reevaluation of opioid policy has resulted in a delay.

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This Month's Must Read
Robert Goldberg and Silvia Sacalis Discuss Workplace Fatigue with Risk & Insurance

Healthesystems’ clinical leaders speak to mitigation strategies to reduce workplace injuries stemming from fatigue.

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Clinical Insights
California Publishes One-Year Report on Workers’ Comp Formulary

The utilization of opioids, compounds, and physician-dispensed medications have significantly decreased.

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Legislation & Policy
DEA to Improve Access to Marijuana Research

Proposed changes to who can grow and research marijuana will soon be available for public commentary.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
Johnson & Johnson to Pay $572 Million in Opioid Trial

An Oklahoma judge found the drug maker to be partially responsible for the harm of the opioid epidemic.

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Healthe Developments
Three Insights from WOHC 2019

Healthesystems’ Chief Medical Officer explores trends impacting workers’ comp, including patient engagement, population health, and more.

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Aug 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Approves First Lyrica Generics

Nine generic versions of Lyrica (pregabalin) have been approved for the treatment of five different medical conditions.

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Spotlight
Healthesystems AVP of Advocacy & Compliance Named Finalist for Comp Laude Award

Sandy Shtab has been recognized for making significant contributions to the workers’ comp industry.

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Clinical Insights
FAIR Health Publishes Telemedicine Report

Looking at over 29 billion private health claims, this study found that claim lines related to telehealth rose 624% from 2014-2018.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
WCRI Reports on Interstate Variation in Dispensing Opioids

While many states report fewer opioid prescriptions, MME levels vary more significantly by state.

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Innovation
Will Autonomous Vehicles Impact Workers’ Comp?

NCCI estimates that a 25-75% reduction in motor vehicle accidents in workers’ comp could save $1-4 billion, creating interest in self-driving cars.

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Jul 2019

Medmonitor
First-Time Generics Approved for Two Pain Medications

Generic versions of Ultram (tramadol hydrochloride) tablets and Dyloject (diclofenac sodium) injections have been approved by the FDA.

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Clinical Insights
NCCI Examines Impact of the ODG Formulary in Arizona and Tennessee

While the utilization of opioids and other problematic drugs decreased, similar drops were seen in states without closed formularies.

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Spotlight
Healthesystems Product Owner Receives IAIABC NextGen Award

Stephanie Arkelian has been recognized as a talented young professional making a positive impact on the workers’ comp industry.

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Legislation & Policy
New York City and Nevada Prohibit Hiring Discrimination for Positive Marijuana Tests

Beyond exceptions for safety or federal positions, employers cannot refuse employment for testing positive for marijuana in pre-employment drug screenings.

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Marijuana Updates
Marijuana Laws No Longer Thought to Reduce Opioid Overdose Deaths

A new study builds upon earlier research with a larger, more up-to-date dataset, finding a reversal in trends.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at WCI Orlando 2019

Visit Healthesystems in booth #909 and learn how we’re making waves in workers’ comp, and how we hope to benefit coastal cleanups for the “Coast to Coast” theme.

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Jun 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Reexamines Discontinued Drug for New Pain Applications

Orphengesic Forte has received a decision date of August 14, 2019.

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This Month's Must Read
Shifting Gears in Patient Transportation with Rideshare

How services like Lyft and Uber can amplify injured worker transportation programs to improve claims outcomes.

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Clinical Insights
The Growing Utilization and Costs of Anticancer Medications

Though they’re only needed for special cases in workers’ comp, anticancer medications can easily exceed $10,000 per monthly fill.

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First Public Hearing for Cannabidiol (CBD) Products

Though most forms of marijuana are highly regulated, CBD products are readily available across the country. What does this mean for healthcare?

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Opioid Crisis Updates
FDA Proposes Fixed-Quantity Blister Packaging for Certain Opioids

In a call for public comment, the FDA believes that reducing excess opioid supplies can lower opioid misuse, abuse, and overdose.

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May 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Approves First Generic Naloxone Nasal Spray for Opioid Overdose

The life saving antidote for opioid overdose will soon be available in a consumer-friendly, generic nasal spray.

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This Month's Must Read
2019 Workers’ Comp Industry Insights Survey

Healthesystems partnered with Risk & Insurance magazine to survey 500+ work comp professionals on their top challenges, trends, successes, and more.

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Clinical Insights
Negative Impacts of Combining Antidepressants with Opioids and Benzodiazepines

Combining all three drugs can reduce claim closure rates to 58.3%, with average claim costs of $94,000.

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Legislation & Policy
Growing Trend: Expanding Cancer Coverage for Firefighters

Florida enacted a law to cover 21 different cancers, while other states like Montana, Maryland, and Virginia have recently passed similar laws.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
National Institute of Health to Launch $350 Million Opioid Intervention Study

Four research sites will test proven opioid prevention and treatment interventions, hoping to reduce overdose deaths by 40% over three years.

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Apr 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Tightens Restrictions for Transmucosal Fentanyl Products

New changes to REMS safety programs will require stronger treatment documentation and oversight.

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This Month's Must Read
Patient Engagement is Personal: How to Help Injured Workers Help Themselves

Patient engagement can lead to better health outcomes, but not all engagement strategies are equally effective.

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Clinical Insights
The Impact of the Changing Workforce

The workforce is aging, getting younger, and gaining more women, all at once. What does that mean for claims management?

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Legislation & Policy
Marijuana Continues to Take Major Steps Forward

Congress may soon clear federal restrictions to processing marijuana transactions, while the FDA asks for feedback on handling marijuana products.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
Oklahoma Reaches $270 Million Settlement with Opioid Manufacturer

Various state and local governments have sued drug developers for the harms of the opioid epidemic, and this could be the first of many settlements.

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Mar 2019

Medmonitor
Tanezumab Trials Yield Positive Results for Pain Management

Phase 3 clinical trials for this non-opioid drug demonstrate significant reductions in pain for osteoarthritis and chronic low-back pain.

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This Month's Must Read
Opioid Imbalance: Risk Disparities Among Diverse Patient Populations

Demographic factors such as gender, ethnicity, socioeconomic status, age, and location can impact opioid risks.

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Clinical Insights
Tackling Topicals: Clinicians Takes Notice

Despite having little clinical impact, topical creams continue to be utilized widely in workers’ comp.

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Legislation & Policy
The Drug Price Debate

Federal lawmakers and administrative agencies continue to investigate how to best lower ever-increasing drug prices.

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Innovation
FDA Establishes Guidance for Brain-Computer Interface Technologies

Can special implants in the brain override paralysis? The FDA believes one day they could.

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Feb 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Nudges Developers to Create Over-the-Counter Naloxone

The FDA created special drug labels to clear a development hurdle and encourage manufacturers.

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This Month's Must Read
Marijuana – What to Expect in 2019 and Beyond

Dr. Robert Goldberg and Sandy Shtab talk with Risk & Insurance about changing attitudes and policies around medical marijuana, its potential role in reducing reliance on opioids, and what this can mean for payers, employers, patients and PBMs.

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Clinical Insights
Troubling Trends for Benzodiazepines

Prescribing has doubled since 2003, overdose deaths quadrupled since 1996, and misuse accounts for 20% of benzodiazepine use.

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Legislation & Policy
PTSD Coverage: More States Draft Legislation

Kentucky, Connecticut, Idaho, and West Virginia proposed bills to make PTSD compensable for first responders.

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Opioid Marketing Tied to Higher Prescribing and Overdose

A new JAMA study finds that increased county-level opioid marketing was tied to elevated overdose mortality.

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Jan 2019

Medmonitor
FDA Approves Two New Strengths of Apadaz

The opioid prodrug for acute pain will soon be available in both a stronger and weaker dose.

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This Month's Must Read
What’s Ahead for 2019 Workers’ Comp Regulations

As 2018’s legislative trends continue to spill into 2019, what big initiatives might impact workers’ comp this year?

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Clinical Insights
JAMA Examines Association of Early Physical Therapy with Long-Term Opioid Use

An analysis of 90,000 private claims explores the relationship between early PT and reduced long-term opioid use in musculoskeletal pain.

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Legislation & Policy
The Legality of Self-Referrals

Can doctors in certain states refer patients to pharmacies which they partially own?

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Innovation
The Buzz Behind Digital Therapeutics

Will doctors one day prescribe apps meant to drive behavior changes instead of drugs?

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Dec 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Approves First Prescription App for Opioid Use Disorder

The reSET-O app uses cognitive behavioral therapy techniques to assist patients engaged in medication-assisted therapy for opioid dependence.

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This Month's Must Read
Hero’s Welcome: Growing PTSD Coverage for First Responders

Formulary and claims management considerations for populations at risk for “mental-only” cases of PTSD.

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Clinical Insights
New Guidelines for Opioid-Induced Constipation

The American Gastroenterological Association released guidance on properly prescribing medications for OIC.

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Marijuana Updates
Marijuana Use Rising Among Older Populations

Marijuana use among adults aged 50-64 tripled from 2002-2014.

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NWCDC
In Case You Missed It: 5 Takeaways on Value-Based Models in Work Comp

Dr. Silvia Sacalis of Healthesystems teamed up with Dr. Adam Seidner of The Hartford for a session at NWCDC – here are 5 key takeaways.

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Nov 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Approves New Opioid, Dsuvia

Five-to-ten times stronger than fentanyl, this drug is not for consumer use, and many claim it could worsen the opioid crisis.

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This Month's Must Read
The Opioid Crisis: Our Defining Moment

Healthesystems’ clinical leaders comment on the collective responsibility of healthcare entities, providers, and legislators to increase efforts that will help stem opioid overprescribing, misuse and overdose.

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Marijuana Updates
Midterm Marijuana Updates

More states allow for the legalization of recreational and medical marijuana, while others consider insurance reimbursement.

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Clinical Insights
JAMA Examines Persistent Opioid Use in Workers’ Comp Patients

A study of 9,596 claimants who filled an opioid prescription found that 30% were still taking opioids 90 days later.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at NWCDC 2018

Join our VP of Clinical Services on December 6th in Las Vegas for a presentation on value-based care in workers’ comp.

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Oct 2018

Medmonitor
DEA Reschedules Epidiolex

The marijuana-derived seizure drug now sits at schedule V, facing far fewer prescribing and dispensing restrictions.

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This Month's Must Read
Dr. Silvia Sacalis Discusses Medication Red Flags with Risk & Insurance

Healthesystems’ VP of Clinical Services offers insight into prescriptions in workers’ comp claims that should raise concerns.

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Legislation & Policy
New Jersey Bill Pushes for Medical Marijuana Reimbursement

Assembly No. 4505 may solidify precedence recently made by a judge from the Division of Workers’ Compensation.

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Workplace Safety
National Safety Council Issues Report on Workplace Fatigue

Common risk factors can increase worker fatigue, leading to more frequent workplace injuries and a loss of productivity.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
Federal Opioid Reform Bill Signed into Law

With an enormous range of initiatives to prevent and treat opioid use disorder, the bill has officially been signed by the President.

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Sep 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Approves New Dosage for Opioid Dependence Therapy

Cassipa (buprenorphine and naloxone) sublingual film delivers a new dosage for the treatment of opioid dependence.

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This Month's Must Read
Dr. Silvia Sacalis Discusses Polypharmacy with WC Magazine

Healthesystems’ VP of Clinical Services explains how too many drugs in a claim can cause health concerns, and what can be done to prevent them.

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Legislation & Policy
FDA Reassesses Opioid Policies

The FDA is working to create new opioid prescribing practices and guidelines, while also shifting drug development priorities for pain medications.

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Clinical Insights
CWCI Releases Polypharmacy Report

According to 2016-2017 data, over 20% of polypharmacy claims are over 10 years old, with more than 50% of them for patients aged 50 and older.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
Massachusetts Study Links Occupation to Opioid Overdose Deaths

On average, construction workers are six times more likely to die from an opioid overdose death, more than any other occupation.

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Healthe Developments
Dr. Robert Goldberg Comments on DEA Opioid Manufacturing Quotas

Healthesystems’ Chief Medical Officer spoke with WorkCompCentral regarding DEA plans to reduce opioid manufacturing.

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Aug 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Accepts New Drug Application for Opioid NKTR-181

NKTR-181 is supposed to offer a lower frequency of opioid side effects. But are more opioids really the solution we need to the opioid crisis?

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This Month's Must Read
Sandy Shtab Discusses the Need to Modernize Regulation with WorkCompWire

Healthesystems’ AVP of Advocacy & Compliance explains how regulation has been unable to keep pace with healthcare innovation & technology.

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Legislation & Policy
PTSD Legislation Continues to Grow

More states cover PTSD without physical injuries for first responders, and 24 states allow PTSD patients to use medical marijuana.

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Clinical Insights
New Developments in Migraine Medications

A new wave of drugs that suppress CGRP proteins to reduce migraines could be on the horizon.

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Opioid Crisis Updates
FDA Proposes New Clinical Endpoints for Development of Opioid-Use Disorder Drugs

Drugs to treat opioid dependence could be approved under new clinical endpoints other than reducing opioid use.

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Healthe Developments
Healthe Clinical Leaders in the News

Our Chief Medical Officer and VP of Clinical Services comment on matters such as the use of anticonvulsants to treat pain and opioid prescriptions for inpatients.

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Jul 2018

Medmonitor
New Opioid in Development May Offer Reduced Risk Profile

Phase 2/3 clinical trial results for Korsuva demonstrate pain relief with fewer side effects.

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This Month's Must Read
Mark of the Millennial: Managed Care for a New Generation

Millennials are more diverse and more open to alternative therapies, medical marijuana, healthcare technology, and dialogue surrounding psychosocial concerns.

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Legislation & Policy
Support for Marijuana Continues to Grow Across the Nation

A flurry of recent developments continues to bring the medical marijuana debate front and center, including further legalization, a Senate bill, a drug approval, and more.

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Clinical Insights
JAMA Study Questions the Effectiveness of Negative Pressure Wound Therapy

In a randomized clinical trial of 460 patients, researchers found the treatment to have similar impact on self-rated disability as standard wound dressing.

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Healthe Developments
Healthesystems at WCIEC Orlando 2018

Visit Healthesystems in booth #914 to see how we explore the conference’s “Cosmic” theme, and for a chance to win a $250 gift card.

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Jun 2018

Medmonitor
Drug Approvals Impacting Workers’ Comp

The FDA recently approved drugs to treat opioid dependence, migraines, and rheumatoid arthritis.

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This Month's Must Read
The Burden of Opioid-Related Mortality in the United States

Among many findings, JAMA reports that 20% of deaths among those aged 25-34 were opioid-related.

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Legislation & Policy
More States Pass Opioid Prescription Limits

Within the last month, laws have passed in Tennessee, Colorado, South Carolina, Oklahoma, and Hawaii.

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Clinical Insights
IQVIA Reports on Global Oncology Trends

Global spending on cancer therapies now exceeds $133 billion.

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Healthe Developments
Healthe Leaders Comment on Clinical Use of Marijuana & MDMA

Our Chief Medical Officer and VP of Clinical Services comment on the clinical use of ecstasy and marijuana.

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May 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Encourages Drug Developers to Focus on Buprenorphine Depot Products

A newly released draft guidance encourages the development of more sustained-release buprenorphine products.

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This Month's Must Read
WCRI Releases CompScope Benchmarks

In-depth reports for 16 different states examine medical payments, costs, duration of disability, and more.

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Legislation & Policy
Illinois Bill May Allow Patients to Trade Opioids for Marijuana

Senate Bill 336 passed with a 44-6 vote and is now headed to the House.

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Clinical Insights
The Craze Over Kratom

Kratom continues to grow in popularity as a drug for pain and opioid withdrawal, despite concerns from the FDA, CDC and DEA.

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Healthe Developments
Four Current and Near-Future Drug Trends Impacting Rx Management

In a special partner post with WorkCompWire, Healthesystems discusses developments in pain management, specialty drugs, and more.

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Apr 2018

Medmonitor
Opioid Withdrawal Drug Closer to Approval

If approved, Lucemyra (lofexidine) would be the first non-opioid drug approved to treat the symptoms of opioid withdrawal.

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This Month's Must Read
Dr. Silvia Sacalis Discusses Value-Based Care with WorkCompWire

Healthesystems’ VP of Clinical Services discusses how workers’ comp is embracing a value-driven approach.

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Clinical Insights
WCIRB Reports on Chronic Opioid Use and Weaning

A new study analyzes the characteristics of chronic opioid use claims, while also examining opioid weaning data.

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Legislation & Policy
PTSD Bills Gain Momentum in Workers’ Comp

A Florida bill was recently signed into law, and states such as Arizona, Utah, Connecticut, and Oregon may follow suit.

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Formulary Updates
More States Embrace Closed Drug Formularies

Indiana and Kentucky signed off on formulary bills, while other states continue to make progress on their promised formularies.

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Healthe Developments
Dr. Robert Goldberg to Speak at IRSG

Healthesystems’ Chief Medical Officer will present "Can Workers’ Comp Catch Up to the Rest of Healthcare?" at the 2018 IRSG Annual Conference.

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Mar 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Approves New Opioid Prodrug, Apadaz

Apadaz oral tablets were approved for the short-term management of acute pain, at no more than 14 days of use.

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Healthe Developments
Dr. Silvia Sacalis to Speak at National Rx Drug Abuse & Heroin Summit

Healthesystems' VP of Clinical Services will co-present Workers' Comp Opioid Use Trends and Effective Population Health Management

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Opioid Developments
Ohio BWC Reports Falling Levels of Opioid Dependence

The number of opioid-dependent injured workers in the Ohio workers' comp system fell 19% in 2017.

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Legislation & Policy
Air Ambulances: State v Federal Cost Control

Many states have attempted to implement fee schedules for air ambulances, but courts citing federal regulations have stricken them down.

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Opioid Developments
State and City Lawsuits Continue to Mount Against Opioid Manufacturers

Forty-one states and over 200 cities and counties claim drug makers deceived patients and doctors regarding opioid safety and addiction risks.

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Feb 2018

Medmonitor
Drug Recalls Impacting Comp

Senna Laxative bottles were found to contain NSAIDs, while 55 lots of compounded drugs face questionable sterility.

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This Month's Must Read
Medication Multiplication

A visual depiction of how opioid side effects can cascade across the body.

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Clinical Insights
Increased Abuse Among Anti-Diarrhea Drugs

When taken in excessive doses, the anti-diarrhea drug loperamide can mimic opioid euphoria, and toxicity events and deaths are on the rise.

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Legislation & Policy
State Legislatures Increase Action Against Opioid Epidemic

The passage of opioid action plans in Arizona, Tennessee, and Pennsylvania are the most recent additions to growing statewide efforts to curb the epidemic.

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Facts & Figures
The Rise of the Gig Economy

In 2003, gig workers made up less than 5% of the workforce. Today, estimates vary between 8% and 40%, raising questions for comp.

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Jan 2018

Medmonitor
FDA Continues to Shift Opioid Strategy

FDA, opioid, opioids, opioid policy, opioid policies, drug development, non-opioid

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Innovation
Artificial Intelligence and Workers’ Comp

Machine learning aims to automate parts of claims management.

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Clinical Insights
No End in Sight for the Opioid Epidemic?

Despite decreases in prescribing rates, the opioid epidemic claims more lives than ever before, partially due to synthetic formulations.

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Legislation & Policy
State and Federal Governments Clash Over Marijuana

The Department of Justice’s recent announcement may come to a head with the will of state governments and popular opinion.

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Facts & Figures
March of the Millennials

By 2020, millennials will make up half the workforce, so how will they impact workers’ comp?

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