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Saturday, January 11, 2014

DWC's IMR Meetings Premature

The noise over the volume of Independent Medical Review requests and Maximus' inability to cope with that volume is at top level and the California Workers' Compensation Institute's latest research paper is certainly going to add to the fury.

The Division of Workers' Compensation has scheduled round table meetings with interested groups for Monday and Tuesday. CWCI's release couldn't be more timely.

CWCI says that basically IMR (and underlying Utilization Review) are working as intended.

The say that only 5.9% of requested medical procedures are delayed, denied or modified through utilization review, and that three out of every four medical treatment requests are approved by claims adjusters without the need for additional oversight.

Moreover, CWCI found 76.6% of the 919,370 treatment requests it evaluated that were sent out for physician review were approved, 6.6% were modified and 16.9% were denied.

One-in-four treatment requests being sent for physician review and one-in-four of those physician-reviewed requests denying or modifying the recommendation means that 94.1% of treatments are approved and 5.9% are denied.

CWCI also reviewed 1,141 independent medical-review decisions that had been issued as of Jan. 2 and found 78.9% of denials are upheld by the administrative review and 21.1% are overturned.

Of the 919,370 medical treatment requests reviewed by CWCi researchers, "pharmacy" garnered fully 43% of all events - this is an astounding number and debunks quite a...
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