Department of Labor & Industries requests proposals to sponsor Centers of Occupational Health and Education
February 10, 2013 · 9:05 PM
The Department of Labor & Industries (L&I) is requesting proposals from health care organizations interested in sponsoring Centers of Occupational Health and Education (COHEs). The COHEs work with medical providers, employers and injured workers to improve health care for work-related injuries and illnesses.
There are currently four COHEs in Washington, based in clinics and hospitals, which provide education and financial incentives to more than 2,000 health care providers to encourage use of best practices in occupational health. Funding from L&I supports health services coordinators who help with case management and getting appropriate services early in an injury claim. A December 2011 study found that treatment by COHE providers reduced lost work days by nearly 20 percent and claim costs by $500 per claim.
L&I expects to select at least six COHE sponsors. Current sponsors must reapply. Responses are due March 18, and L&I plans to select the successful bidders by April 19.
The request for bids, RFP K2556, was posted at Washington’s Electronic Business Solutions Internet site on Jan. 22.
The COHE expansion is part of workers’ compensation reforms enacted by the 2011 Legislature. The health care reforms will help workers return sooner to good health and their jobs, and are expected to save more than $200 million over four years.