Avoiding Addiction: Strategies to Aid with the Pain Management Dilemma

A unique and costly challenge for many employers and insurers is managing workers who have become addicted to narcotic medication as a result of pain management treatment for a work related accident.

Growing awareness of the effects that pain management can sometimes present for injured workers has necessitated a more critical look at the issue.  From an employer’s perspective, there are ways in which this challenge can be successfully addressed, and the Maryland Workers Compensation Commission is demonstrating its support of that effort.

Consider the following tips to curtail issues related to pain management and to offer alternative suggestions to combat this emerging problem:

In summary, referrals to pain management have dramatically increased over time in Worker’s Compensation cases.  It seems that often providers refer injured workers to pain management rather than confronting the patient whose complaints outweigh the diagnostic evidence.  These complaints can be fueled by various factors that are completely unrelated to the work accident claim.  The growing trend toward pain management is, at times, having a very negative effect on the recovery process as well as the injured worker’s ability to return to work.  Utilizing the tips provided above can assist in proactively avoiding the prolonged and harmful effects associated with improper pain management for both the injured worker and the employer.