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Workers Comp and the Healthcare Industry

Why do you need Workers Compensation Insurance?

Accidents happen.  In every business, a worker can be injured on the job.  It could be as simple as someone lifting a box that’s too heavy, or something falls off a high shelf and strikes an employee. Maybe an employee slips on a wet floor or trips on an exposed electrical cord.  Simple, everyday accidents and occurrences that could happen anytime, anywhere, to anyone.


Workers Compensation Risk and the Healthcare Industry

According to the CDC, Healthcare is the fastest-growing sector of the U.S. economy, employing over 18 million workers.

 Because work in the healthcare industry can be physically demanding, healthcare workers are especially at risk. Workers are also exposed to the danger of injury by the variety of people and things they encounter as they go through their daily routines.

Cases of nonfatal occupational injury and illness with healthcare workers are among the highest of any industry sector.1   

Hospitals, medical and dental offices, medi-spas, hospices, and home health care can all be hazardous.   Sharp objects, back injuries from overexertion, repetitive stress injuries, slips and falls, harmful exposure to chemicals and hazardous drugs, violence, and stress are some of the hazards that challenge the healthcare worker and could result in a workers comp claim.


 What is Workers Compensation Coverage?

Workers’ compensation insurance provides medical and lost wage benefits to workers who are injured on the job. Workers compensation laws vary from state to state but most states require employers to purchase insurance if they employ even one worker. East state has workers compensation laws that contain exceptions for certain types of workers which may include domestic workers, independent contractors, and casual employees.  Independent Contractors, in particular, is a term used frequently but has very specific definitions in state law. You should check with your state’s regulations for specific definitions of excluded workers.

Who purchases Workers Compensation Insurance?

Employers purchase Workers Compensation Insurance.  Most states allow employers to buy insurance from independent insurers but a few require they purchase insurance from a state-controlled fund. The cost of workers compensation insurance cannot be passed on to employees.

Do Employers Have to Purchase Workers Compensation Insurance?

Workers’ compensation insurance is required for all employees, with limited exceptions, in most states. There are penalties for lack of coverage.  Depending on your state law, you may be required to pay fines; some daily, some punitive.   If an employee is injured, your state may require you to pay for the claim yourself and then tack on additional fees. The penalty in some states may even include business shut-down depending on the circumstances.  Check your state law for specifics in your state.



 Center for Disease Control, National Institute of Occupational Safety and Health, Workplace Safety and Health Topics, Healthcare Workers




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