WCEC 8.21.13: The Final Day

08.21.2013


By JOAN E. COLLIER

The final day of the conference has grown from a half-day schedule to an 8 to 5 day packed with presentations and attendees.

The multi-state presentations continue to expand, and this year we had speakers from Alabama, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, Mississippi, North Carolina, Oklahoma, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas and Virginia. The day began with an opening general session at which all the state participants gave an overview of their systems (and, because this is after all the South, bantered about who had the best sports team).

The opening session was followed by two Compare/Contrast sessions where representatives from different jurisdictions discussed a variety of workers’ compensation topics. A break for lunch (courtesy of the Workers’ Compensation Defense Institute, which sponsored the entire multi-state track), was followed by breakout sessions where state board regulators and/or judges joined the other speakers for detailed discussions on subjects crucial to claim handlers in each jurisdiction. The day ended with the popular “Are You Smarter than a 5th Grader?” game show and the handing out of the much-anticipated “2013 Multi-State Workers’ Compensation Laws” book.

While that breakout was going on, other conference attendees were learning how to handle the intricacies associated with Medicare Secondary Payer Compliance. Over the last 10 years, the conference has provided attendees with multiple presentations on all aspects of MSP compliance. This year’s program focused on specific national issues that continue to challenge the workers’ compensation industry throughout the country, such as conditional payment resolution, the federal government’s incursion into the claims area, and the impact of changing demographics and the aging workforce.

The day also included a full package of sessions from the Professional Mediation Institute, covering multiple party mediations, the diversity factor, commercial litigation, and emerging trends.

In addition, we had day 2 of The Center for Excellence, day 3 of the National Workers’ Compensation Judiciary College, and breakouts on Medical Office Management; REMS for opioids; Longshore and Harbor Workers’ Act, Jones Act and Defense Base Act; Social Security; and the Florida Division of Workers’ Compensation on regulatory issues.

Also, we understand that it is impossible to get to every session over the four-day conference in which you might have an interest. There are simply too many of them. A number of our speakers have made their presentations available online. If they supplied them to WCI, they are on our website. Go to the Annual Conference tab; Speakers & Agenda. From there, find the day/time/speaker you want. If the presentation is available online, you will see the word “Handout” near the speaker’s name. You also can click on the person’s name to pull up the biography, where you will find company affiliation and contact information.

And the final word: Save the date for 2014! We hope to see you again here at the Orlando Marriott World Center August 17 - 20, 2014.

Joan E. Collier is the Chief Communications Officer of the Workers’ Compensation Institute.

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