New programs provides California employers with tools and
opportunities to reduce rising medical costs
Anaheim, CA, December 16, 2003 - As the nation continues to grapple with
rising medical costs contributing to increasing workers' compensation rates,
nowhere are the problems more debilitating than in California. Consider for
example, workers' compensation medical expenses in California are the highest
in the nation. In addition, injured workers in California see chiropractors
more than twice as much per claim as workers in other states, according to a
2002 study by the Workers' Compensation Research Institute. While recently
passed legislation promises some relief for California employers and is one of
the top priorities of Governor Schwarzenegger, businesses are seeking
additional ways to better manage their escalating workers' compensation costs.
Addressing this need, Intracorp, a leading provider of workers' compensation
and disability management services, recently introduced several cost
containment initiatives that offer employers a variety of opportunities to
reduce their medical expenses.
New services offered by Intracorp, which serves nearly 2 million workers
in California and 12.5 million nationally, include:
- Expanded California Provider Network - Intracorp recently signed an
agreement with Health Net Plus, a recognized leader in workers' compensation
managed care, giving employers and claims payors broader access to quality
care and specialists, deeper discounts and improved direction of employees to
more cost-effective providers for workers' compensation care. With the
addition of Health Net Plus, Intracorp now offers its customers access to more
than 700,000 network providers nationally, and nearly 300,000 in California.
"As medical costs and workers' compensation premiums continue to rise, a
strong network portfolio is an essential element of an effective cost
containment and medical management program," explains Ken Ross, senior vice
president, Disability Management, Intracorp. "Due to the expansion of our
provider networks, the use of in-network providers in our programs by workers
has increased by 10 to 15 percent. As a result, nationwide savings by
employers on medical costs have increased 15 to 20 percent."
- California Health Care Organization (HCO) - Last fall, the California
Department of Industrial Relations' Division of Workers' Compensation
certified Intracorp's health care organization (HCO) to provide medical
networks for workers injured on the job. Intracorp's California HCO includes
a network of best-in-class occupational physicians and hospitals that work
with medical and vocational specialists to provide optimal medical care and
facilitate the return-to-work process.
"California employers who have contracted with Intracorp's HCO in the past
year have already seen positive results, such as improved network utilization
of 20 to 40 percent, and medical savings of 10 to 15 percent," says Ross. The
combined power of these services offers employers in California the
opportunity to make a significant improvement to their bottom line through
aggressive cost-savings techniques," adds Ross.
- New California Outpatient Care Services - Through its partnership with
Health Net Plus, Intracorp now offers customers Qmedtrix, a cost containment
product designed to help employers and payors realize additional savings on
the processing and payment of outpatient facility services, which are not
covered by fee schedules.
"We are closely monitoring the emerging legislation in California related
to outpatient fee schedules. We will leverage Qmedtrix, which has already
shown customer savings of 75 to 80 percent, along with Intracorp's AccuMed
bill review product to provide customers with a comprehensive way to control
their overall medical costs," says Ross. "In addition, Intracorp's extensive
utilization review expertise will help employers maintain compliance with new
legislation that increases employer's utilization review responsibilities."
Philadelphia-based Intracorp, with more than 4,000 employees, provides
health and disability care management services to 27 million consumers
throughout the United States. Intracorp's telephonic and onsite case
management services provide solutions for employer-sponsored health care,
workers' compensation and disability insurance programs. Intracorp also
offers disease management, utilization management, return-to-work programs,
ergonomic consulting, provider bill review and provider network access. For
more information, visit Intracorp's Web site at: http://www.intracorp.com.