August 12, 2022

Workers' comp insurers challenge dispensing policy

Several workers’ compensation insurance companies are challenging a state policy that they say improperly requires carriers to authorize physicians, physician assistants and nurse practitioners to dispense medication to injured workers.

The companies filed the challenge last week in the state Division of Administrative Hearings against the Florida Department of Financial Services.

It contends that a March 31, 2020, “informational bulletin” issued by the department’s Division of Workers’ Compensation about the issue was an improper unadopted rule.

“There is no statutory precedent granting the DWC (the Division of Workers’ Compensation) this authority to limit carrier control of provider authorization,” the challenge said.

“The DWC simply has no legal authority to promulgate a rule or policy requiring mandatory authorization of practitioner dispensing. Petitioners therefore request that any such policy of mandatory authorization of practitioner dispensing be invalidated and held inapplicable to petitioners.”

The case was filed May 18 by Normandy Insurance Co.; Zenith Insurance Co.; Bridgefield Employers Insurance Co.; Bridgefield Casualty Insurance Co.; BusinessFirst Insurance Co.; and RetailFirst Insurance Co.

The case has been assigned to Administrative Law Judge Yolonda Green.

Tags: News Service of Florida

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