State News : Texas

NWCDN is a network of law firms dedicated to protecting employers in workers’ compensation claims.

NWCDN Members regularly post articles and summary judgements in workers’ compensations law in your state.  

Select a state from the dropdown menu below to scroll through the state specific archives for updates and opinions on various workers’ compensation laws in your state.

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It seems that every month we have something to relate about the ongoing national opioid epidemic, and, unfortunately, this month is no different. Recent reporting from Bloomberg news indicates that, while opioid dependence is a growing cause of unemployment, about two-thirds of those who abuse pain relievers are still employed. The impact of such a scenario should be obvious: opiate use in the workplace lowers attentiveness and increases the risk of injury to the affected worker and his or her colleagues. Additionally, according to Castlight Health, a San Francisco-based healthcare information company, the cost of healthcare expenses posed to an employer by an opioid-dependent worker is roughly twice as much as that of clean employee. 

Drug-testing among employers is on the rise, but synthetic opioids such as oxycodone are frequently omitted from testing, perhaps because of their basis in seemingly legitimate prescriptions from medical providers. 

The crisis was addressed at the 2017 Risk Management Summit in Las Vegas. Greater employer involvement, specifically through the use of nurse case managers, was touted as a particularly effective tool in preventing opioid dependence among injured employees, returning them to work quickly, and maintaining productivity upon their return. When a physician has prescribed narcotics, a nurse case manager can engage the prescribing physician in discussions about how best to wean an injured employee off the medication, stopping dependence before it begins.