National Council on Compensation Insurance Projects Significant Savings for Overall Workers’ Compensation System Costs
JUNEAU—Recent adjustments to the Workers’ Compensation Medical Fee Schedule, as recommended by the Medical Services Review Committee, will reduce workers’ compensation system costs by a projected 3.7 percent.
The National Council on Compensation Insurance reviewed the 2020 medical fee schedule approved by Alaska Department of Labor and Workforce Development Commissioner Dr. Tamika L. Ledbetter and the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Board at its October meeting in Anchorage.
The NCCI did not include these expected savings in its rate filing for 2020, which includes a 14.4 percent reduction in the voluntary market and an 11.3 percent reduction in the assigned risk pool market (subject to approval by the Division of Insurance). Together, the changes will result in lower costs for Alaska businesses that have historically paid high premiums.
“For years, workers’ compensation costs were going through the roof, burdening Alaska’s small business community and stretching the resources of the Workers’ Compensation system as a whole,” Ledbetter said. “I am pleased that our efforts to address runaway costs are paying off. I am very appreciative of the members of the Workers’ Compensation Board and the Medical Services Review Board for their diligence in addressing this important issue.”
Governor Dunleavy said, “I thank the Department of Labor and Workforce Development, the Alaska Workers’ Compensation Board, and our national partners for their concentrated effort to address the high rate of workers’ compensation costs. Through their efforts, businesses across Alaska can expect to see a significant reduction in cost going into 2020. This is good for business, and good for the Alaska economy.”
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Mining in 2019: The Year in Review
Following a year when metal prices were both up and down—sometimes dramatically; when international trade squabbles spooked investors to both enter and exit the metals markets; and when mining companies started the year cautiously bullish but ended it cautious bearish, those involved in Alaska mineral exploration, development, and production are once again asking themselves: “Where did we succeed, where did we fail, and where do we go from here?”