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Texas Department of Insurance
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Commissioner’s Bulletin # B-0010-20

March 25, 2020


To:   All Texas workers’ compensation system participants

Re:   Coronavirus (COVID-19) - workers’ compensation issues


On March 13, 2020, Governor Greg Abbott declared COVID-19 a statewide public health disaster. The Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC) is monitoring the latest developments on COVID-19 and the recommended social distancing measures as we consider the potential impact it may have on the delivery of benefits in the Texas workers’ compensation system.  This bulletin shall be in effect for the duration of the governor’s COVID-19 declaration, or until further notice from DWC.

Workers' compensation insurance carrier operations

Workers’ compensation insurance carriers must continue or begin:

  • providing timely claims adjusting services;
  • processing and delivering indemnity benefits and medical payments in a timely manner; and
  • authorizing payments to pharmacies up to a 90-day supply for any prescription medication, subject to the remaining number of days authorized by the prescribing provider, regardless of the date the prescription was most recently filled.

Suspension of exams

DWC is taking the following action regarding designated doctor, required medical, and referral examinations:

  • Ceasing orders for DD exams and holding requests. If you encounter special circumstances as a result of this suspension, please contact DWC at 1-800-252-7031 and select option 1.
  • Suspending RME, DD, and referral exams that have already been ordered. Any RME, DD, or referral exams ordered and scheduled on or before the date of this bulletin are now suspended and should not occur until further notice from DWC.

Tolling of medical billing deadlines

Failure to submit a timely medical bill will be deemed an exception due to a catastrophic event under Labor Code Section 408.0272(b)(2).

DWC will take into account the challenges system participants are facing when considering enforcement actions.

As this issue evolves, DWC will continue to evaluate system and agency operations. If system participants are experiencing issues, contact DWC. Please refer to the DWC COVID-19 resource page for updates and follow the Centers for Disease Control’s recommendations.

For more information, please use the contact information below.

Health care providers
compconnection@tdi.texas.gov
800-252-7031, Option 3 

Employers
healthsafety@tdi.texas.gov
800-687-7080
512-804-4600

Hearings
512-804-4010

Questions from the media 
DWCCommunications@tdi.texas.gov

Injured employees
800-252-7031, Option 1

Report a safety or health hazard
800-452-9595
safetyhotline@tdi.texas.gov

All other questions
DWCExternalRelations@tdi.texas.gov

 

Cassie Brown
Commissioner of Workers’ Compensation
Texas Department of Insurance, Division of Workers’ Compensation



For more information, contact: Webmaster@tdi.texas.gov

Last updated: 1/19/2021