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RETAIN is a first step towards establishing accountability for job loss following injury/illness

Jennifer Christian MD
 

One way to look at RETAIN is as a beginning – of a long-term effort to START establishing accountability within government and to a lesser extent within other sectors of the economy for preventing needless work disability (preventable job loss / withdrawal from the workforce). 

Today, few people recognize worklessness as a very poor outcome of a health problem that develops in a working person – and yet it is definitely that.  There is a cascade of manifold negative consequences to physical and emotional health, as well as family, social, and economic well-being that occur when formerly independent working people lose their livelihood and enter a life of dependency on government benefits.

See powerpoint attached – a summary of the policy paper I wrote on Establishing Accountability to Reduce Job Loss after Illness/Injury while serving as a member of the Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work Policy Collaborative sponsored by the US Dept of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) that is now managing RETAIN.   Full text is also attached.    Reading pages 1-7 will give you all the main ideas.

When ODEP commissioned this paper, and I started thinking about this issue, I suddenly saw that TODAY, none of the three stakeholders on the front lines -- those called upon to respond at the time that a working person develops an injury or illness -- feels ANY accountability for preventing job loss or workforce withdrawal.  Those three front-line stakeholders are the treating physician or other healthcare practitioner, the employer, and the benefits claims payer – if there is one.  And this issue has not been on ANY government agency's radar.  Yet, when the individuals who lose their job end up on public disability-related programs, it is the taxpayers who end up holding the bag and paying for that lack of accountability.

BTW, if you get the daily digest of RETAINers emails (that combines all messages for the previous day) you can go to our website and look for MESSAGES -- and open the attachments there.

Cordially,
Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH
President / Chief Medical Officer
Webility Corporation
95 Woodridge Road
Wayland, MA 01778
Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)
Mobile:  617-803-9835
Email: jennifer.christian@...
Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com
Website:  www.webility.md 

 

 

Jack Smalligan
 

Yes, RETAIN is a great opportunity to help build the knowledge base for future government policy and funding decisions.  I helped develop the RETAIN funding request in the President’s budget when I was at the Office of Management and Budget.  The local challenges of pulling together a state RETAIN proposal are part of the learning process that will inform future policy.   In the United States our government programs are very weak at providing early intervention for people experiencing a potentially disabling health condition.  I will be publishing a series of papers in a few months giving my perspective on why we have failed in this area and developing a path forward.  Meanwhile, RETAIN is an immediate opportunity to make a contribution.   The proposal had rare bipartisan support and is a great first step.

 

Jack Smalligan

Senior Policy Fellow

202-261-5423

 


U R B A N  
I N S T I T U T E

Income and Benefits Policy Center

www.urban.org

 

From: RETAINers@groups.io [mailto:RETAINers@groups.io] On Behalf Of Jennifer Christian MD
Sent: Monday, July 09, 2018 10:01 PM
To: RETAINers@groups.io
Cc: jennifer.christian@...; jhchristian@...
Subject: [RETAINers] RETAIN is a first step towards establishing accountability for job loss following injury/illness

 

One way to look at RETAIN is as a beginning – of a long-term effort to START establishing accountability within government and to a lesser extent within other sectors of the economy for preventing needless work disability (preventable job loss / withdrawal from the workforce). 

Today, few people recognize worklessness as a very poor outcome of a health problem that develops in a working person – and yet it is definitely that.  There is a cascade of manifold negative consequences to physical and emotional health, as well as family, social, and economic well-being that occur when formerly independent working people lose their livelihood and enter a life of dependency on government benefits.

See powerpoint attached – a summary of the policy paper I wrote on Establishing Accountability to Reduce Job Loss after Illness/Injury while serving as a member of the Stay-at-Work/Return-to-Work Policy Collaborative sponsored by the US Dept of Labor's Office of Disability Employment Policy (ODEP) that is now managing RETAIN.   Full text is also attached.    Reading pages 1-7 will give you all the main ideas.

When ODEP commissioned this paper, and I started thinking about this issue, I suddenly saw that TODAY, none of the three stakeholders on the front lines -- those called upon to respond at the time that a working person develops an injury or illness -- feels ANY accountability for preventing job loss or workforce withdrawal.  Those three front-line stakeholders are the treating physician or other healthcare practitioner, the employer, and the benefits claims payer – if there is one.  And this issue has not been on ANY government agency's radar.  Yet, when the individuals who lose their job end up on public disability-related programs, it is the taxpayers who end up holding the bag and paying for that lack of accountability.

BTW, if you get the daily digest of RETAINers emails (that combines all messages for the previous day) you can go to our website and look for MESSAGES -- and open the attachments there.

Cordially,
Jennifer Christian, MD, MPH
President / Chief Medical Officer
Webility Corporation
95 Woodridge Road
Wayland, MA 01778
Office:  508-358-5218 (preferred)
Mobile:  617-803-9835
Email: jennifer.christian@...
Blog: www.jenniferchristian.com
Website:  www.webility.md