Cumulative Trauma claims under attack

Cumulative trauma claims arise where a person performs repetitive work. This can include frequent lifting and carrying, walking, and keyboard use. There has been an effort nationwide to eliminate these types of claims, spearheaded by the insurance carriers and business interests. California is now inching closer to limiting these common, and mostly legitimate types of injuries. Recently, California Assemblyman Adam Gray
(D- Merced), introduced AB221. This Bill aims to limit payment for medical treatment in cumulative trauma cases, and significantly limits what medical providers can recover. By targeting the medical providers and payments, cumulative trauma claims can indirectly be reduced as doctor and others will be hesitant to provide treatment. The physician or provider might not be paid, or at a minimum will face roadblocks. The assault on Workers’ Compensation in California and other states has been ongoing, and this is the latest step. We are hopeful that the Legislature will reject this proposal, as it will harm injured workers. If AB221 passes, expect more litigation, fewer doctors who will treat cumulative trauma, and more unfair denials of legitimate claims.