Abbie Hudgens had an idea. The Administrator of the Tennessee Bureau of Workers’ Compensation wanted to start a conversation with and within the workers’ compensation community, geared to the future and addressing the challenges faced by the industry. Her concept was a blog; a blog that would not just allow her and other authors to offer concepts and ideas, but one that also sought out and encouraged public comment and discourse.

And Monday, that idea goes live as a new section of the News Center. We are very pleased to be able to offer our platform as a delivery vehicle for her concept. 

Called “It’s COMPlicated,” the initial post will explain the idea behind the effort, and link to a short 4 question survey designed to provide community feedback to drive the project along. Hudgens has arranged for an impressive group of contributors who will post articles and ideas on the blog. She has emphasized that this project must include people from all sides of workers’ comp, with differing views and beliefs as to what comp is, and what it should be in the future. 

It is important that we all talk, and even more important that we listen as this effort moves forward. This blog will encourage public comments. It will also offer occasional polls to help tell the organizers what is important to the people in the trenches; the folks who toil daily and face the hurdles to perform the work of our industry.

(To comment on our site you must be registered, but it is free. Registration helps keep the spammers at bay. You can register as a subscriber here)

There have been several attempts to review and improve workers’ comp over the years. The most notable, of course, was the 1972 National Commission on Workmen’s Compensation. Now being recognized on the fifty-year anniversary, their report made 84 recommendations for the industry, with 19 of them labeled “essential.” More recently, in 2016, there was a series of meetings called The Workers’ Comp Summit that was referred to as a “National Conversation” (that effort, ironically was also the result of a question posed by Ms. Hudgens). The International Association of Industrial Accident Boards and Commissions (IAIABC) also ran a meeting that year with similar objectives.  

This effort, however, will be the first of any of them to have the opportunity to be a true national dialogue. The answers to whatever ails us lie within the people who perform the functions of workers’ comp each and every day. Sharing those thoughts and ideas will be helpful and will impact how this project flows. 

Please watch for the inaugural post on our site Monday. It’s COMPlicated is viewed by us to be a critical, original effort, and will be located accordingly where the “Current News” category resides today. We are not removing any features from the site, but we are consolidating some things and moving them around a bit in this process. We appreciate your patience in that process.

And we will really appreciate your contributions and opinions on this new project. Workers’ comp faces many challenges as it heads into its next 50 years. And we are still talking about implementing recommendations made 50 years ago. Much has changed since then. The relevance of some of those ideas may end up being challenged. There is much to discuss. And the solutions may not be easy.

As we said, it’s COMPlicated.

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