Brian Allen: “The workers’ comp industry needs to evolve.”

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Workers’ compensation industry expert Brian Allen considers himself an agent of change.

A featured speaker at the LHA Trust Funds Workers’ Compensation Symposium on August 23, he plans to bring more than 30 years of experience and a “think outside the box” attitude to Louisiana.

“We get caught in habitual thinking and sometimes it's hard to think differently,” Mr. Allen says. “But we need to evolve, and there are ways to do that — ways that make a lot of good economic sense in the long run.”

Here’s a sneak peek of what to expect at our upcoming Workers’ Compensation symposium — the speakers, the content, and the enthusiasm for helping employers and employees recover from injuries in the workplace.

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Preventing Workplace Injuries

It’s no secret that healthcare employees are particularly vulnerable to workplace injuries.

In 2021, the healthcare industry reported the highest number of non-fatal workplace injuries, according to the Bureau of Labor Statistics. Nurses and nursing assistants filed approximately 15% of all workers’ compensation claims in 2020.

Some of the most common and severe workplace injuries in healthcare are musculoskeletal disorders (MSD) caused by patient lifting, transferring, and repositioning.

Safe Patient Handling Mobility (SPHM) programs are a highly effective way healthcare facilities can help reduce these types of workplace injuries. Ms. Stacie Jenkins, Vice President of Patient Safety and Risk at LHA Trust Funds, will discuss the best practices your facility could potentially implement to create and sustain a successful SPHM program.

Ms. Jenkins will also provide an overview of the LHA Trust Funds Workers’ Compensation Quality Initiative on SPHM findings and the program’s current status.

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Claims Featuring Medical Marijuana

Medical marijuana became available for dispensing throughout Louisiana in 2019, and lawmakers continue to expand the conditions to qualify.

Nevertheless, this extension of the law increases the likelihood of potential workers' compensation lawsuits involving employees who are under the influence of marijuana during an incident.

Mr. Barry J. Rozas, partner at LeBas Law Offices, focuses on the most recent changes to Louisiana medical marijuana laws, how the workers’ compensation industry has adapted, and strategies for handling this type of claim.

Transitional Duty Programs & Employee Recovery

Mr. Allen, who serves as Vice President of Government Affairs at Mitchell and co-founder of Optimized Outcome Solutions, will speak on two topics at the symposium: “Creating and Sustaining a Transitional Duty Program” and “How to Prepare an Injured Worker for Recovery”.

The first presentation answers questions about how transitional duty programs can add value for both employers and employees while the second discusses how injured employees can use the “four pillars of recovery” to help aid in their return to work.

What both presentations have in common, Mr. Allen says, is empathy for injured workers who truly want to recover.

“The claims process is just second nature to us because we do it all the time,” he says. “But for that person who got hurt? It's their first time through and they're overwhelmed and scared to death.”

While there will always be claimants who try to game the system, acknowledging the emotional journey injured workers undergo allows employers to develop the necessary tools to support them effectively.

“I believe that people who get hurt at work — most of them want to get back to work,” Mr. Allen says. “They want to get back to the life they had before they got hurt.”

What to Expect

LHA Trust Funds created the Workers’ Compensation Symposium to support Louisiana professionals as the industry evolves each year.

Our goal is to give you access to the most relevant workers’ compensation information while providing networking opportunities with local and national experts. We aim for you to be inspired to improve employee safety for your organization with the information presented during the event.

Ready to register? Reserve your seat.


Need more workers’ compensation resources? Learn five essential must-haves for handling workplace injuries at your organization.