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Analysis of New Workers' Compensation Claims in the Department of Defense Civilian Workforce, 2000–2012

Nelson, Cameron J. L. MD, MPH; Bigley, Daniel P. DO, MPH; Mallon, Timothy M. MD, MPH, COL, MC, USA

Journal of Occupational and Environmental Medicine: March 2015 - Volume 57 - Issue - p S20–S26
doi: 10.1097/JOM.0000000000000368
Federal Workers' Compensation Supplement

Objective: This study of Department of Defense (DoD) civilian employees Workers' Compensation (WC) claims for chargeback year 2000 through 2012 aimed to analyze the frequency, rates, and costs of WC claims representing 5% of the DoD annual personnel budget.

Methods: A multiyear cross-sectional study of WC claims data identified the top five most frequent causes, natures, and anatomical sites; changes in frequency, worker age, costs, and time were evaluated for trends.

Results: The annual frequency and rate of new DoD WC claims decreased over time, whereas costs per new claim have increased. New claim frequencies, rates, and costs aggregated in older age groups.

Conclusions: The increasing trend in costs of each claim and the overall program costs presents a need for case management. Analysis of WC claims data is necessary to help target injury prevention efforts and reduce program costs.

From the Uniformed Services University of the Health Sciences, Bethesda, Md.

Address correspondence to: Cameron J. L. Nelson, MD, MPH, 4301 Jones Bridge Rd, Department PMB, Room A1040A, Bethesda, MD 20814 (

The views expressed in this article are those of the authors and do not necessarily reflect the official policy, position or views of the Uniformed Services University, the Department of the Army, the Department of the Navy, the Department of Defense, the Veterans Health Administration or the US Government.

The authors declare no conflicts of interest.

Copyright © 2015 by the American College of Occupational and Environmental Medicine