Teddy Awards

Teddy Overview

Teddy-250What is the Teddy Award?

Are you proud of what you’ve accomplished with your workers’ compensation and injury prevention programs? Does your organization have ideas worth stealing? We’d like to learn more.

We invite employers of all sizes, in all industries, to apply for the Theodore Roosevelt Workers’ Compensation and Disability Management Award, sponsored by PMA Companies. The Teddy Award, established in 1994, was named in honor of President Theodore “Teddy” Roosevelt, who introduced the first piece of significant workers’ compensation legislation in the U.S.

Some food for thought as you apply. We’re looking for well-rounded programs that take a holistic approach to workers’ comp, injury prevention and disability management.

Teddy Award Sponsor:

PMA Companies

Teddy Award winning companies have several core characteristics in common. They do everything possible to protect their most valuable asset: their people. They strive daily to reduce workplace risks. When injuries do happen, winning companies waste no time securing expert care for their workers. They have systems and practices to ensure that they’re getting the best possible outcomes for their medical spend.

Teddy winners amaze us with their 110 percent commitment to reducing lost time, using imaginative strategies that turn the old model of return-to-work on its head.

They also track and measure all relevant data — continuously and aggressively looking for opportunities to improve outcomes while eliminating wasted expense. Along the way, many of them also develop effective strategies that help manage challenges such as opioid overuse, an aging workforce population, union negotiations, legacy claims, litigation and fraud.

Not least of all, Teddy winners get results. We look at performance data to gauge whether an organization’s programs really help achieve the intended goals.

Teddy winners go above and beyond best practices, and they have a firm grasp of the big picture. They leverage the talent of internal teams as well as vendor partners to build programs that enable them to drive year-over-year improvement for the long-term.

What you need to know

The Teddy Award winners are selected by a panel of judges consisting of industry professionals, including past Teddy Award winners.

All applicants must complete the online application and have the option to include attachments as necessary.

All winners and finalists will be interviewed for the sake of profiles to be published in the November 2017 issue of Risk & Insurance®. The information is also posted on the Risk & Insurance website, eNewsletter, web digital edition, and iPad and iPhone/Android apps.

Award winners should be available to attend a special Teddy Awards Q&A session at the National Workers’ Compensation and Disability Conference® on December 7, 2017, at Mandalay Bay Resort & Casino in Las Vegas, Nev.

Questions?

If there are any questions about the contest or the application material, please call Michelle Kerr, Associate Editor, 215-784-0910, ext. 6216; or e-mail [email protected].

EXTENDED DEADLINE: July 21, 2017

Winner Announcement Date: November 2017 Issue

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2017 Teddy Awards

The Era of Engagement

The very best workers’ compensation programs are the ones where workers aren’t just the subject of the program, they’re a part of it.
By: | November 1, 2017 • 5 min read

Employee engagement, employee advocacy, employee participation — these are common threads running through the programs we honor this year in the 2017 Theodore Roosevelt Workers’ Compensation and Disability Management Awards, sponsored by PMA Companies.

A panel of judges — including workers’ comp executives who actively engage their own employees — selected this year’s winners on the basis of performance, sustainability, innovation and teamwork. The winners hail from different industries and regions, but all make people part of the solution to unique challenges.

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Valley Health System is all-too keenly aware of the risk of violence in health care settings, running the gamut from disruptive patients to grieving, overwrought family members to mentally unstable active shooters.

Valley Health employs a proactive and comprehensive plan to respond to violent scenarios, involving its Code Atlas Team — 50 members of the clinical staff and security departments who undergo specialized training. Valley Health drills regularly, including intense annual active shooter drills that involve participation from local law enforcement.

The drills are unnerving for many, but the program is making a difference — the health system cut its workplace violence injuries in half in the course of just one year.

“We’re looking at patient safety and employee safety like never before,” said Barbara Schultz, director of employee health and wellness.

At Rochester Regional Health’s five hospitals and six long-term care facilities, a key loss driver was slips and falls. The system’s mandatory safety shoe program saw only moderate take-up, but the reason wasn’t clear.

Rather than force managers to write up non-compliant employees, senior manager of workers’ compensation and employee safety Monica Manske got proactive, using a survey as well as one-on-one communication to suss out the obstacles. After making changes based on the feedback, shoe compliance shot up from 35 percent to 85 percent, contributing to a 42 percent reduction in lost-time claims and a 46 percent reduction in injuries.

For the shoe program, as well as every RRH safety initiative, Manske’s team takes the same approach: engaging employees to teach and encourage safe behaviors rather than punishing them for lapses.

For some of this year’s Teddy winners, success was born of the company’s willingness to make dramatic program changes.

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Delta Air Lines made two ambitious program changes since 2013. First it adopted an employee advocacy model for its disability and leave of absence programs. After tasting success, the company transitioned all lines including workers’ compensation to an integrated absence management program bundled under a single TPA.

While skeptics assume “employee advocacy” means more claims and higher costs, Delta answers with a reality that’s quite the opposite. A year after the transition, Delta reduced open claims from 3,479 to 1,367, with its total incurred amount decreased by $50.1 million — head and shoulders above its projected goals.

For the Massachusetts Port Authority, change meant ending the era of having a self-administered program and partnering with a TPA. It also meant switching from a guaranteed cost program to a self-insured program for a significant segment of its workforce.

Massport’s results make a great argument for embracing change: The organization saved $21 million over the past six years. Freeing up resources allowed Massport to increase focus on safety as well as medical management and chopped its medical costs per claim in half — even while allowing employees to choose their own health care providers.

Risk & Insurance® congratulates the 2017 Teddy Award winners and holds them in high esteem for their tireless commitment to a safe workforce that’s fully engaged in its own care. &

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More coverage of the 2017 Teddy Award Winners and Honorable Mentions:

Advocacy Takes Off: At Delta Air Lines, putting employees first is the right thing to do, for employees and employer alike.

 

Proactive Approach to Employee SafetyThe Valley Health System shifted its philosophy on workers’ compensation, putting employee and patient safety at the forefront.

 

Getting It Right: Better coordination of workers’ compensation risk management spelled success for the Massachusetts Port Authority.

 

Carrots: Not SticksAt Rochester Regional Health, the workers’ comp and safety team champion employee engagement and positive reinforcement.

 

Fit for Duty: Recognizing parallels between athletes and public safety officials, the city of Denver made tailored fitness training part of its safety plan.

 

Triage, Transparency and TeamworkWhen the City of Surprise, Ariz. got proactive about reining in its claims, it also took steps to get employees engaged in making things better for everyone.

A Lesson in Leadership: Shared responsibility, data analysis and a commitment to employees are the hallmarks of Benco Dental’s workers’ comp program.

 

Michelle Kerr is associate editor of Risk & Insurance. She can be reached at [email protected]