Workplace injuries and illnesses have a major impact on your bottom line. The U.S. Department of Labor Occupational Safety and Health Administration estimates that employers pay almost $1 billion per week in direct workers compensation costs alone. In Missouri, more than 25,000 nonfatal injuries occur each year, devastating families emotionally and financially, reducing businesses’ productivity and driving up work comp insurance premiums.
There are many ways to promote safety in your business, but which investments will yield the best outcomes? Don’t overlook these three programs as you consider options to reduce workplace injuries and save money.
Post-offer employment testing
Also called POET, this valuable program seeks to reduce costly new hire injuries by testing if employees are physically capable of performing their assigned duties. Missouri Employers Mutual Insurance estimates that one in three lost-time claims involves a new hire, with an average claim cost of $54,000. Implementing POET in your organization is a worthwhile investment that can return significant cost savings. Some work comp providers offer discounted POET services through a partner agency.
Your employees can access convenient and timely health care via remote consultation services like telemedicine and nurse triage. Using telemedicine, health professionals can diagnose and treat a variety of conditions from the convenience of the office or shop, reducing expenses and time away from work. Nurse triage allows an employee to speak to a nurse as soon as a medical concern arises. The nurse determines the urgency of the issue and recommends appropriate care. Many telehealth services require no specialized equipment and can be accessed with a smartphone or webcam.
Provider incentive programs
Work comp insurance providers share your goals of preventing injuries and keeping your employees safe at work. Establish a partnership with your provider to continually work toward injury-free status. Some companies even offer rewards when you demonstrate that safety is a priority in your workplace. MEM recently introduced safety dividends and safety grants, two programs that promote and reward safety initiatives.
These programs offer a serious return on safety by helping you prevent workplace injuries, and manage them successfully if they do occur. Your business is unique, and your work comp provider should be able to help you evaluate which programs best fit your safety needs. All small businesses have one thing in common: They strive for the safest environment possible, which saves money and helps employees get home safely.