As California employers are adjusting to respond to COVID, Occupational Physicians via CSIMS (California Society for Industrial Medicine & Surgery) would have the legislature impose new requirements on MPNs (Medical Provider Networks) along with up to $50,000 fines for each violation.
The intent of proposed bill AB 399 is to assure injured workers treatment within difficult-to-find specialties and to assure that providers more clearly ascertain authority.
At least one organization, CCWC (California Coalition on Workers' Compensation) has declared this bill to be "...a direct assault on much of the utilization review, independent medical review, and independent bill review requirements that have been negotiated between labor and employers over the past several successful workers’ compensation reform efforts." The bill was expected to be heard in committee on March 6.
Updates are expected.
Not only does the bill substantially undermine important tools agreed-upon by labor and employers, but it also establishes new penalties as high as $50,000 per violation. ~ CCWC 2021 Legislative Update