N.C. Department of Correction--Correction News--December 1997
BENEFITS REPS GET UPDATE ON WORKERS COMP
Atlantic Beach - About 200 DOC benefits representatives from across the state discussed workers compensation and salary continuation programs during an Oct. workshop. Benefits manager Betty Graves and her staff explained proper procedures for everything from filling out forms to employee and supervisor responsibilities. You may contact the benefits representative at your work station for details. Below is a brief synopsis of several points made.
All DOC employees are covered under the NC Workers' Compensation Act. Expenses are paid from the department's current operating budget. An injury is covered if it was caused by an accident or incident that arose out of and in the course of the employment. Unless there is an accident, an injury received while performing the regular duties in the usual and customary manner is not compensable. Injuries must be reported immediately in writing. Medical payments or compensation may not be paid before the employee's written notice. If approved, workers will get 66 2/3 percent of their wages earned during the 52 weeks before the date of injury.
Under the salary continuation plan, employees whose positions require Criminal Justice certification as State Correctional Officers or State Probation/Parole Officers will receive full salary for lost work time due to an injury. Also covered by the salary continuation plan are non-certified employees injured by a deliberate act of an offender or inmate. For example, a nurse is trying to take an inmates blood pressure when without warning the inmate strikes the nurse. Another example is if a secretary is drafting a letter at her desk and an offender or inmate comes in and strikes the secretary.
The DOC's Transitional Return to Work Program allows employees to be assigned temporary work. Thats if theyre restricted from their normal job duties due to a job related injury. Employees may return to suitable, productive work while continuing to recover from the job related injuries. DOC believes that offering transitional work to employees during the recovery period is an important part of the healing process. An employee may participate in this program until the treating physician advises that the employee has reached maximum medical improvement.
Its important that injury forms are filled out correctly and thoroughly to prevent delays in payments.
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