CWCI's incoming president outlines aggressive research agenda
"That was one of the important points in the discussion was that I see my role still primarily in research and the presentation and discussion of that research," Swedlow said. "So I still plan on that and I have the support of the board and membership to maintain that focus."
Swedlow's association with the CWCI dates back to 1988, when he worked as an independent consultant to the organization. He formally joined it in 2000 as the executive vice president of research.
Next month Swedlow will take over as president of CWCI from the retiring J. Michael Nolan. He will be the Institute's fourth president in its 50-year history.
"I never started out my working relationship with the Institute thinking I'd be president," Swedlow says. "It has evolved over a long period of time. Because of that we were able to really change the nature of how the Institute was able to leverage the forces and build technical capabilities and conduct research in ways we didn't really anticipate 20 years ago."
While the main focus of CWCI's research will continue to be monitoring the trends and cost drivers of the California workers' comp system, Swedlow says a couple of other projects are in the works. One is a look at the workers' comp eco system and how it has evolved over time.
"It's going to be a rather deep dive into the various components of the workers' comp system, such as how medical benefits are delivered, how we assess and encourage disability management and return to work, how our system comes into contact with other benefit delivery systems, such as Medicare, group health and the like," Swedlow said. "Workers' comp doesn't stand on its own it interacts with other delivery systems."
The changing nature and value of medical provider networks is another project coming up. The second research track deals with SB 863, the sweeping legislative reforms passed last year.
"What we plan on doing is rather some extensive modifications of our research databases to better enable us to track trends related to the reforms and the changing nature of benefit delivery, including return to work, medical dispute resolutions, the changing nature of our fee schedule, liens and pain management."
Read more at the WorkersComp Forum homepage.
March 25, 2013
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