Quick Thinking and Golf

You step up to the ball, set your club, get your stance, you’re ready. And then it happens. The voices in your head start going off, “don’t shank it,” “keep your eye on the ball,” “don’t move your head,” “seriously though, don’t shank it,” and so on. And then…

You shank it.

We’ve all been there. Many times. We know we can do it, we are physically skilled and capable enough to do it, but for some reason our minds won’t shut up long enough for our bodies to take over.

Well, don’t you think it’s time we just get over ourselves? I mean, really. You’re not going to talk the ball into the hole. You’re not a ball whisperer. Forget everything you’ve been taught to think before hitting the ball and just let your body DO it.

We underestimate our body’s ability and try to compensate with our minds. That’s simply not the answer. If you want to hit the ball straight then shut that head of yours up and just hit the damn thing.

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Functional Capacity Evaluation

Workers’ compensation, absenteeism and attrition are among the biggest employee-related expense for most employers. An employee pool that have high incidence of injury and health claims usually mean higher premiums that employers have to pay for workers’ compensation and health insurance while attrition leads to high training and turnover costs. According to the WorkSTEPS website, pre-screening employees for functional capabilities will reduce these employer costs considerably, as much as 50% in some cases.

Another way to reduce these costs is to require employees to take a functional capacity evaluation (FCE) post-injury to determine fitness to return to work as well as eligibility for workers’ compensation claims and disability payments. This ensures that the injured worker is truly able to perform his or her job functions adequately and not exacerbate the existing injury as well as determine if any claims for disability or workers’ compensation is justified. The date gathered from these assessments may be used as a basis for decision-making in claims as well as other employee-related health and work concerns.

An FCE is a double-edged sword. It can prove that an injured claimant has grounds for a claim or even more than what is being claimed. It may also show that there is no reason why a worker should not go back to work immediately. At any rate, an FCE is often required by an insurer, and it should be administered by a disinterested third party which will produce a credible and objective FCE report.

All employers should invest in a service that will provide employee prescreening as well as FCEs to improve productivity and reduce employee-related costs. It would also be advisable to have other assessments done such as upper quadrant/carpal tunnel testing and work environment evaluation to help in injury management and prevention. The return on investment may be realized immediately, significantly and in multiple ways.

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Economic Crisis Highlights the Importance of Disability Benefits

There has been a growing trend in the US for formerly productive albeit partially disabled workers to seek disability benefits since the economic crisis hit the job market in 2007. Research shows that employers who accommodated employees with back problems, weak hearts, or other health conditions that reduced their capacity to work have been forced to let them go in these tough times. Productivity has become a priority for companies struggling to make ends meet. In the meantime, those who have been let go have turned to social security and employer-sponsored disability insurance for financial relief.

The importance of disability benefits is undeniable. According to the website of Hankey Law Office, P.C. in Indiana, a steady source of income is invaluable in assisting the disabled worker cope with the fact of their disability. A recent survey of disability beneficiaries show that the emotional impact of being able to keep off welfare through disability benefits is almost as important as the financial security it affords.

Social security disability (SSD) is almost always the go-to option for totally disabled workers whose disability is determined to last at least 12 months. However, SSD is not an option for workers who are only partially and/or temporarily disabled; besides which processing an SSD claim can take several months to a year. In the meantime, bills are going unpaid and loss of home and health becomes very real for the family. An article on the website of LaMarca Law Group, P.C. in Des Moines explains how workers’ compensation disability benefits can save the day for workers who may not qualify for SSD or who may desperately need relief while waiting for their SSD or other benefits to get processed. It emphasizes the wisdom of procuring disability insurance while employable because serious injury and disability can come at any time.

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BP Oil Spill Claims

Three years after the event, many victims of the Deepwater Horizon oil rig explosion and subsequent oil spill are still waiting to get compensation for the losses they sustained. Also referred to as the BP oil spill, the catastrophe affected the environment as well as the health and livelihood of people of the surrounding areas including 5 US states namely Louisiana, Mississippi, Florida, Alabama, and Texas. This is especially true for non-profit organizations, some of which according to an article on the Williams Kherkher website may actually be eligible for a Risk Transfer Premium on top of the actual loss incurred because of the accident.

Unfortunately, the process of applying for compensation after the BP oil spill is very different from the process people go through for something like insurance coverage following a car accident. There are established guidelines and regulations which dictate how far an insurer can delay or deny coverage for a claim. Not so with BP.

Under the terms of the Settlement Agreement as well as the court-appointed BP oil spill claims processing center which was believed by many would speed up the process, BP could challenge each and every claim at a whim, significantly slowing everything down to a snail’s pace. In other words, BP can and does dictate the terms under which compensation is processed and meted out. Too often, it is much too little and too late to be of any significant help for the victims.

In order for claimants to make any headway with BP oil spill claims, they need to know precisely how they are processed, and how to appeal what would almost certainly be a denial at the first try. Most claimants have neither the knowledge or experience to make any significant headway in this endeavor, which is good for BP. It is highly advisable to enlist the help of a lawyer who have a good track record in dealing with BP oil spill claims for any chance at success.

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Collateral Consequences of Criminal Charges

Professional licenses are granted to those whose work requires a higher standard of conduct than non-licensed professions. These are mandated for medical doctors, nurses, engineers, lawyers, teachers, and so on in order to practice and in the US the requirements vary from state to state. For example, some states require interior designers to be licensed to practice while others do not.

Because these professionals are generally required to abide by a code of ethics, if a professional is charged with a crime and subsequently convicted, it may very well result in the loss or restriction of a person’s professional license whether or not the crime is work-related. Loss or restriction of a professional license due to a criminal conviction is usually a death knell to a career, no matter how long and well-established. Since no license means no one cannot practice, it also means the loss of clients, and it is very difficult to make a comeback from that.

In criminal trials, a judge may impose a sentence in accordance with the pertinent statute, and this is considered a direct consequence of a criminal conviction. However, the state may also attach civil consequences over and above the penalties issued at the time of sentencing which may not be imposed or intended by the judge but which is applicable under civil law. These civil sanctions are called collateral consequences of criminal charges or the 4Cs.

Consequences of criminal charges are serious enough for any person, but it is more so for licensed professionals. If you find yourself charged with a crime, you should make every effort to defend your professional license at all costs. Find the best criminal defense lawyer in your area specializing in professional license defense; you simply cannot afford to do otherwise.

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Personal Injury with the Use of Alloderm

There are some products that are used in surgery which are not considered medications, biological materials or devices which may still result in personal injury. One such product is the AlloDerm Regenerative Tissue Matrix (AlloDerm) from manufacturer LifeCell based in New Jersey. It is a banked acellular human tissue graft most commonly used as a support system in breast reconstructive surgery, burn grafting, dental grafting, eyelid reconstruction and hernia repair. It is ideal for use in tissue grafting because it has been stripped of all cells, leaving only the lattice of collagen behind which will not be identified as foreign material by the body, avoiding tissue rejection. It is often harvested from human cadavers.

Unfortunately, AlloDerm is not particularly effective and may be even downright dangerous when used in certain types of hernia repairs. According to an article on the website of Williams Kherkher, the main problem with AlloDerm hernia patches is that it tends to fail, necessitating additional repair operations and often leading to infections, swelling, pain, abscesses and contusions. Patients who were provided with an AlloDerm hernia patch after the year 2000 and experienced serious side effects may be eligible for compensation from LifeCell and should contact a product liability lawyer in the area immediately. Currently, about 300 personal injury lawsuits have been filed against the AlloDerm manufacturer.

Several studies conclude that bridging the gap using AlloDerm is more likely to result in a recurrence of a ventral (abdominal) hernia because the mesh is unable to provide enough support. However, AlloDerm still has its uses as reinforcement once the primary fascial reapproximation of the hernia is performed. This means that the gap must be closed before the AlloDerm can be used, and its role is that of secondary support. In such cases, recurrence is much lower.

But this does not mean LifeCell is off the hook. As the developer, manufacturer and marketer of the product, LifeCell had a duty to its clients to thoroughly test the product, provide explicit instructions on its safe use, and not to make false claims. In failing to do any or all of the above, LifeCell becomes liable for any injury that patients may sustain from the use of the product.

For more information on how to file a case against LifeCell, contact a New Hampshire Medical Malpractice Attorney today to learn more about the next steps to take.

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