Although primary care physicians treat approximately 80 percent of all occupational injuries, the remaining 20 percent of injuries are so serious as to require care from medical specialists. The most seriously injured workers must have continuing access to specialty care to which they are constitutionally entitled.
Any worker who suffers a serious employment-related injury does not rely on a primary care physician for diagnosis or treatment. In fact, 20% of workers’ compensation claims involve injuries requiring treatment from a specialist. SB 923 will reduce payments to these physicians. This will likely also reduce the number of physicians who will be available to diagnose and treat California’s most seriously injured workers. There will be a disproportionate impact in the rural areas of the state where they are already suffering a shortage of physicians.
The sponsors of SB 923 have refused to accept amendments that would simply prevent the proposed pay shift if the state determines that it would result in reduced access to specialists. The sponsors are willing to pull out all the stops to achieve a pay increase, even at the expense of the health and rehabilitation of California’s workers.
VIAW asks that you vote “NO” on SB 923.
OPPOSITION: (Partial List)
International Machinists and Aerospace Workers (IAM)
California Chiropractic Association
California Medical Association (CMA)
California Orthopedic Association
California Society of Industrial Medicine & Surgery (CSIMS)
California Applicant Attorneys
League of United Latin American Citizens (LULAC)
South Bay Labor Council