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The Administrative Policies

TAP NO. 24: WORKERS’ COMPENSATION

Scope

This policy applies to all full-time and part-time faculty, staff, and student employees on Duquesne's payroll who sustain a work- related injury, illness, or disease while performing duties within the course and scope of their employment at the University.  Employees may be eligible for reasonable medical services and supplies, orthopedic appliances and prosthesis, and wage loss benefits. Volunteers and individuals who provide contracted services are not eligible for benefits under the University's Workers' Compensation Program.

Purpose

The purpose of this policy is to review expectations related to the work-related injuries and to provide an overview of the administration of the workers' compensation program.

I. Overview

The University has a responsibility, as defined by the Pennsylvania Workers' Compensation Act, to provide payment for reasonable medical services and supplies and wage loss compensation for Faculty, Staff, and Student Employees who sustain injuries or illnesses during the course of and is also causally related to their employment. The University has established procedures for determining liability, proper medical management, and possible solutions to prevent future injuries or accidents, and compensation through an elective schedule of benefits. The University may use a third party administrator, who has full access to claim information, to assist in the administration of this program.

II. Program Administration

It is the responsibility of the Disability Claims Manager in the Office of Human Resources to work with the affected employees, their supervisors, General Counsel, and the third party administrator to establish and resolve claims, and to return employees to productive University employment where needed and appropriate. The Disability Claims Manager will coordinate all medical treatment and wage compensation issues with the assistance of a third party administrator. The employee is responsible for maintaining contact with their department regarding their absence and for providing notification in writing when medically released to return to work. The supervisor is responsible for maintaining contact with the affected employee. The department must consider making necessary, temporary accommodations in cases where the employee is temporarily unable to return to normal duties but is medically released to return to work with restrictions. Modified duty positions should not be extended beyond 120 days.

III. Reporting an Injury

Any injury, illness, or disease that is work-related or occurs during the course of the work day must be reported by the employee to his/her supervisor immediately or within 24 hours. Failure of the employee to report the incident within the specified time period, whether or not medical treatment is initially requested or needed may jeopardize any claim for workers' compensation benefits. The supervisor in conjunction with the affected employee is responsible for submitting a Supervisor's Accident Report to the Disability Claims Manager in the Office of Human Resource Management within 72 hours of first notice from the employee. An Accident Investigation Report must be completed even if the employee declines medical care and signed by the Supervisor.

A Supervisor also should contact the Disability Claims Manager at 412-396-6677 to report all injuries/illnesses as soon as possible prior to submission of an Accident Incident Report, stating the employee's name, what happened, and if the employee sought medical treatment. Leave a voice message if no one is available. All causes of injuries/illnesses shall be investigated by the Disability Claims Manager.

Incident/Accident Investigation Report

IV. Medical Treatment

The acting supervisor of an affected employee should assess the immediacy of medical care. If the injury is minor (which includes abrasions, small cuts, rashes, strains, etc.), send the employee to the nearest WorkWell location (1-800-662-2400). If more severe or if it is an emergency, contact the campus emergency number at 412-396-2677 (COPS) for assistance in arranging transport to Mercy Hospital emergency department. In order to ensure that medical treatment is covered by the University's Workers' Compensation Program, the employee must seek medical attention from a member of the designated panel of providers for a period of 90 days from the date he/she seeks medical treatment or the University may not be required to pay for medical care during that period of time.

The Disability Claims Manager in the Office of Human Resources should be contacted at 412-396-6677 immediately if an affected employee requires medical treatment for a work-related incident. A listing of the panel of providers as designated by the University and the procedures to follow if an affected employee requires continued medical treatment may be obtained through the Office of Human Resources.

Employees who refuse reasonable medical treatment including hospitalization, surgery, medication or supplies will forfeit all rights to benefits or compensation or any acknowledgment of disability status as a result of such refusal.

See Medical Provider Panel 

V. Wage Loss Compensation

An employee may be paid a portion of his/her salary/ wages if the employee is fully disabled from working in any capacity (as deemed by the treating physician and reviewed by the University) due to a work-related incident. The Disability Claims Manager in the Office of Human Resources will advise the employee and supervisor as to the amount of compensation they will receive as well as any other conditions that will apply.

VI. Related Information

TAP No. 12, DUFlex Benefit Plan.

TAP No. 23, Leaves of Absence: Family and Medical Leave and Personal Leave.

VII. Violations

Abuse of the Workers' Compensation Program may be cause for disciplinary action (loss of pay, suspension, or dismissal) which will be reviewed on a case-by-case basis.

VIII. History

Date of most recent revision: August 2014.

IX. Ownership of Policy

Office of Human Resources