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California comp medical review volume drops to record lows



The total number of independent medical examination determination letters in California dropped to a record low by 2020, according to a new report from the California Workers & # 39; Compensation Institute.

California still works remotely and the amount of non-COVID workers 'compensation claims and medical services remains below pre-pandemic levels, the number of independent medical reviews used to resolve California workers' compensation disputes continued to decline during the first half of 2021, "CWCI said. in a bulletin published last Friday.

CWCI reported that 136,738 IMR decision letters were issued last year, a decrease of 16.6% from 163,899 in 2019 and 26% below the record 1

85,735 letters issued in 2018.

Also with the form and other changes to treatment guidelines, Opioid disputes still accounted for 25.8% of drug cases in the first half of this year, more than any other class of drugs. Musculoskeletal therapies accounted for the second largest share with 17.8% and dermatologicals in third place with 16.3%.

Despite the overall decrease, prescribing requests still account for more IMRs than any other type of medical service, according to the CWCI. Physiotherapy comes within a distant second and accounts for 13.3% of the disputed treatments during the first half of this year and injections with 12%. half. No other category accounted for more than 5% of the IMR during this period.

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