Thursday, November 01, 2012

Insurance Industry Extends Research Finding Few Age Differences among Workers Compensation Claims

The National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI), which published a report in 2011 finding that, on average, costs for workers aged 35 and older tend to be quite similar, has published a new report that extends the 2011 analysis and finds additional similarities between the 35-and-older-age cohorts. Specifically, "NCCI Workers Compensation and the Aging Workforce: Is 35 the New “Older” Worker?" compares the share of claims by diagnosis and age cohort resulting from permanent partial, temporary total, and medical-only injuries, goes on to identify the factors that account for the observed increases in severities over time for various age cohorts, and concludes by examining safety and loss control programs related to the aging workforce.

Among other things, the report finds that, for a range of specific diagnoses, the shares by type of workplace injury (i.e., temporary total, permanent partial, and medical only) are remarkably comparable across age cohorts. For example, the shares of claims due to "sprain of neck" that were temporary total injuries are virtually identical for both younger and older workers.

In addition, the report finds that injuries due to high severity diagnoses have historically been more common for older workers, but those high severity diagnoses are now becoming common in younger-age cohorts as well.

Source: National Council on Compensation Insurance Press Release (October 31, 2012)