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Weekly news and updates from Washington's workers' comp and workplace safety leader
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The WSIA Weekly, 7.1.16


WSIA membership renewal notices out today
Today marks the start of WSIA's new program, membership, and fiscal year, which runs July 1st to June 30th each year. As part of that, your membership renewal notice is going out in the mail today or early next week. We've held dues levels steady this year for both employers and associates. Membership is the lifeblood of a tight-knit organization like WSIA, and we very much appreciate your continued engagement and support of the community through your membership. Here's a snapshot of some of the return on your investment, and if you have any questions or ever want to look at ways to get the most out of your membership, drop us a line

SI Colloquium presentations available for download
On Wednesday, Swedish Medical Center hosted the joint WSIA-Labor & Industries summer colloquium on occupational health best practices. As usual, it was a phenomenal day of presentations from leaders in evidence-based medicine and occupational health. We've posted all of the presentation slides we were able to obtain from the day on our website. Click here to download.

Supreme Court denies review in Kimzey
Earlier this week, the Washington Supreme Court turned down an appeal by an injured worker seeking to substantial expand the workers' compensation coverage for stress-related issues. WSIA has been closely watching Kimzey v. Dept. of Labor & Industries, a case asserting coverage for post-traumatic stress disorder as an occupational disease, caused by the cumulative effects of a paramedic's exposure to difficult events. While the law, including recent rules adopted by L&I on mental health conditions, pretty clearly bars cumulative exposure claims for stress conditions, the Superior Court in Kimzey actually held that the worker's PTSD was a compensable occupational disease. Although the Court of Appeals reversed that decision, attention shifted to the Supreme Court to see what would happen. The court's rejection of the appeal is a welcome application of settled law and avoids a potentially explosive fight over the limits of occupational disease coverage in Washington.

Check out our Events page for new save-the-dates
As we embark on a new program year, we've posted on our website's Events page the dates and locations for many of the upcoming conferences and regular Industrial Insurance University workshops through next summer, including the Fall Conference coming up September 23rd in the SeaTac-Tukwila area, our annual conference next May, and the next sessions of the WWCP certification. We'll be adding more content to the calendar as planning continues, including our slate of webinars, and topical workshops. You'll see that several of the workshops are set in WSIA's training space at our new office in Olympia, which we're very excited to make available to members. Registration for the events will open closer to them, so in the meantime save the dates for the events that interest you. Click here for the events page.

Recent rule expands workers' comp medical coverage for unpaid students
Our members in the educational sector will be interested in recent L&I rulemaking expanding the availability of medical-only workers' compensation coverage to unpaid students and student volunteers beyond public K-12 schools, including private K-12 schools and colleges. The rule also creates a means for all entities to cap reporting at 100 hours per volunteer per calendar year. The legislation authorizing this change went into effect on June 9th, and L&I issued its rule on an emergency basis on June 10th, effective immediately, in order to implement the law. You can read the new rule here and some background here.

Registration now open for September certification review
Applying to take the September 15th L&I certified claims handler exam? Join us to review for the test on September 13th and 14th at the WSIA office in Olympia, as claims experts Erinn Hyre and Amela Tankic of Sedgwick and Kevin Kincade of Eberle Vivian take course participants through a comprehensive review of the exam. The course is also good review or exposure for those not seeking certification, but desiring an accredited, soup-to-nuts tour of Washington's unique and often confusing system. Click here for info/registration.
WSIA wishes you and your families a safe & happy Independence Day.
Our office re-opens July 6th in observance of the holiday.
Copyright © 2016 Washington Self-Insurers Association, All rights reserved.


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