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“The only thing necessary for these diseases to the triumph is for good people and governments to do nothing.”


 

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Subject:   Reporting Occupational Injuries, Illnesses and Diseases

http://arc.publicdebt.treas.gov/

 

Part 2

1.

PURPOSE

 

 

This directive mandates the procedures to be followed within Public Debt for reporting job-related injury, illness and disease claims.

2.

BACKGROUND

 

The Federal Employees' Compensation Act (FECA) provides monetary compensation, medical care, vocational rehabilitation and Office of Personnel Management (OPM) retention rights to Federal employees who sustain disabling injuries, illnesses or diseases as a result of their employment with the Federal Government. The FECA also provides for the payment of funeral expenses and compensation benefits to qualified survivors of the deceased employee in cases of employment-related death. It is the intent of Public Debt to administer the FECA in accordance with all governing laws, regulations, and procedures.

3.

SCOPE

 

These procedures apply to all Public Debt employees.

4.

CANCELLATION

 

PDS 810-1, "Procedures for Reporting Traumatic Injuries," dated October 12, 1982.

5.

REFERENCES

 

A.      Department of Labor, Office of Workers' Compensation Programs (OWCP) Handbook, June 1994. (Replaces Federal Personnel Manual, Chapter 810.)

B.      Federal Employees' Compensation Act, 5 U.S.C. 8101, et. seq.

C.      Department of Labor's governing regulations for claims under the Federal Employees Compensation Act, 20 CFR, Part 10.
 

6.

DEFINITIONS

 

A.      Claimant - is an individual who has filed a claim for benefits under the FECA.

B.      Compensation - is benefits or compensation paid or payable under the FECA, including money paid because of loss of wages, loss of use of major body functions, medical expenses, rehabilitation expenses and death benefits to the survivor(s).

C.      Compensation Specialist - is an employee of Public Debt assigned to administer the workers' compensation program within Public Debt.

D.      Continuation of Pay (COP) - is continuation of an employee's regular salary for up to 45 calendar days of wage loss due to disability and/or medical treatment following a traumatic injury. COP is not considered compensation under FECA and is, therefore, subject to deductions for income tax, retirement, etc.

 

E.       Controversion - is the formal administrative procedure through which Public Debt presents evidence to the OWCP to challenge an employee's claim for benefits. Controversions must be thoroughly documented and submitted at the earliest date the facts are available.

F.       Date of Injury - is the month, day and year that an injury occurs.

G.      Department of Labor (DOL) - is the agency which manages the Federal Workers' Compensation Program through the OWCP.

H.      Disability - means the incapacity, because of employment injury, to earn the wages the employee was receiving at the time of injury.

I.        Leave Without Pay (LWOP) - is the absence from work without pay and without charge to annual, sick or another leave category. Employees receiving compensation benefits from OWCP must be in a LWOP status.

J.        Light or Limited Duty - is the temporary or permanent assignment to productive duty of an employee who is partially disabled from a job-related injury or illness and is unable to perform his/her regular duties based upon medical evidence submitted.

K.      Medical Examination - is an examination conducted by a physician to establish the nature, extent and job-relatedness of an injury, illness, or disease. Medical examinations are utilized to:

L.        

1.       Evaluate an employee's current medical status;

2.       Authorize limited duty assignments;

3.       Assist in the rehabilitation process; or

4.       Support a controversion.

M.      Nonconcurrence is the disagreement of Public Debt with an occupational disease claim or a claim of recurrence of an injury. It is comparable to a controversion in that it challenges the validity of an employee's claim.

N.      Occupational Disease or Illness refers to an condition produced by systemic infections; continued or repeated stress or strain; exposure to toxins, poisons, fumes, etc.; or other continued and repeated exposure to the work environment over a period greater than a single day or work shift.

O.      Physicians are surgeons, podiatrists, dentists, clinical psychologists, optometrists, chiropractors and osteopathic practitioners within the scope of their practice.

P.       Recurrence refers to the reappearance of the original symptoms/pains of a previously reported and accepted injury.

Q.      Traumatic Injury refers to a wound or other condition of the body caused by external force, including stress or strain. Traumatic injuries include damage to or destruction of prosthetic devices or appliances. It must be caused by a specific event or incident or series of events or incidents within a single day or work shift.

 

7.

RESPONSIBILITIES

 

A.      Director,Human Resources Division, (HRD) has the overall responsibility for. The overseeing of the workers' compensation program within Public Debt.

B.      Supervisors are responsible for:

1.       Advising injured employees to seek prompt and appropriate medical attention or in the event of an emergency, seeking prompt and appropriate medical attention from sources such as Health Units and/or ambulance;

2.       Being familiar with the knowledge of compensation benefits and ensuring their subordinates know how to properly report job-related traumatic injuries and occupational diseases or illnesses;

3.       Properly completing and submitting appropriate injury forms expeditiously;

4.       Advising injured employees to report, to the Health Unit for treatment and to obtain the accident reporting forms; or, where a Health Unit is not available (i.e., after hours, Washington offices and Savings Bonds Marketing Office (SBMO) Regional and District offices) directly providing employees with accident reporting forms;

5.       Attempting to determine the cause of an accident occurring in their work area and, as appropriate, working with health and safety and/or other officials to recommend and/or take corrective action;

6.       Understanding the criteria and procedures for controverting claims believed to be unjustified, including the development and submission of evidence to sustain controversion, monitoring of employees' condition during the COP period, and making light or limited duty assignments available following an injury;

7.       Documenting for non-traumatic or occupational disease claims the conditions of employment, risk exposure, etc., to support or deny the job-relatedness of a condition;

8.       Providing or developing job vacancies commensurate with employee skills, medical limitations and earnings in order to restore injured employees to active duty at the earliest possible date; and

9.       Complying with the requirement of Treasury directives to report promptly and directly to the Inspector General any knowledge, information or allegation coming to his/her attention which indicates that any employee or former employee may have committed a criminal act or violation of Department of the Treasury's "Minimum Standards of Conduct" with respect to the receipt of, or claim for, workers' compensation.

·                                          Employees are responsible for:
 

1.       Reporting all job-related injuries and illnesses to their supervisor without delay;

2.       Reporting without delay to the Health Unit for treatment and obtaining the appropriate forms, or to their supervisor where a Health Unit is not available, to obtain advise on treatment;

3.       Promptly providing all information requested by Public Debt and OWCP and ensuring that their physician(s) does likewise;

4.       Promptly reporting any change in medical/physical status to Public Debt and OWCP; and

5.       Cooperating with Public Debt and OWCP in their efforts to identify appropriate alternative employment or reasonable accommodations which would return them to gainful employment.

Part 2
 

 

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