The City of Radford prioritizes early injury reporting – leading to more than 30 years on the Gold Star List

“Almost every quarter that I can remember since 1994, the City of Radford has been on the Gold Star List,” said VRSA Director of Workers’ Compensation Robin Duvall.

Last fall, Duvall along with Senior Account Executive Lisa Schenk visited with staff in the City of Radford to present them with cookies and balloons in congratulations for their latest quarter on the Gold Star List.

“The Gold Star recognition means a lot to us,” said City Manager David Ridpath. “Our employees have seen the benefit of starting care as soon as possible after being injured; we’ve seen the benefit in getting them treated quicker which leads to better outcomes; and all contributes to lower costs that impact our premium.”

The Gold Star List is published each quarter in the VRSA Pooling Matters newsletter to recognize members who have reported their workers’ compensation claims within three days of injury. Timely reporting helps make things go right for both injured employee and their employer.

The City of Radford has made it a goal to be listed on the Gold Star List each quarter.

“It’s actually our proof – being on the Gold Star List – to our elected officials and citizens that we are proactive and doing everything we can do on our end to assist injured employees,” said Director of Human Resources Dawn Diamond. “It starts with employees knowing what they need to do, following through with department heads, and making sure they report claims timely. I give credit to employees and department heads.”

From left: Radford Director of Operations Basil Edwards, Radford Director of Human Resources Dawn Diamond; VRSA WC Senior Medical-Only Claims Representative Cheryl Jenkins; VRSA Indemnity Claims Representative Jennifer Moore; and Radford City Manager David Ridpath.

Training staff to report injuries as they happen, no matter how insignificant they may seem, is key.

“What happens at 2 p.m., sometimes hurts a lot more at 2 a.m.,” says Duvall. “Getting treatment as quickly as possible is crucial toward achieving the best outcomes for the injured employee.”

The city promotes their progress in early reporting through quarterly emails to elected officials and the HR newsletter disseminated to staff.

“Early intervention starting from the initial day you are injured, vs. letting it drag on and potentially doing something at home to worsen the condition – it’s the early intervention that has a measurable influence on recovery time,” said Diamond.

Late reporting is a major cost driver in workers’ compensation claims, and timely reporting helps keep costs under control and helps injured employees begin their recovery process sooner.

“We’re all pooling in this thing together,” said Ridpath. “If everyone worked toward that Gold Star criteria, I think overall we can lower the premium costs across VRSA’s entire membership.”

Members recognized for timely reporting this quarter can be found here. If you have questions about the Gold Star List, contact your member services representative.