Five Things You Need to Know: 10/29, Monday Edition


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1) PA Synagogue Shooting Leads to Multiple Injuries and Fatalities

Robert Bowers has been identified as the Pittsburgh Tree of Life synagogue shooter, entering while a service was underway on Saturday morning, and opening fire in the “…deadliest attack on the Jewish community in the history of the United States,” according to an Anti-Defamation League statement in an ABC News article. The article was written by Kaelyn Forde, Jack Date, Meredith McGraw, Aaron Katersky, Josh Margolin and Mike Levine. As of press time Sunday morning, “…Eleven people were killed and at least six more were injured — including four police officers,” per the media outlet. “…Eight men and three women were killed in the shooting, according to a criminal complaint. One of the four officers is in critical condition.” Bowers’ 29 federal charges include “…four counts of bodily injury to a public safety officer (that) stem from the police officers injured in the shooting.”

2) PA Work Comp Bill Signed by the Governor

While PA has seen some major action recently involving work comp changes in legislation, the wait is over. HB 1840, signed by Gov. Wolf last week, has been introduced with intentions to alter impairment ratings, opioid use and medical cannabis legislative elements, writes Brian Pedersen of Lehigh Valley Business, and Daniel Moore of the Pittsburgh Post-Gazette. One piece of the bill would continue IRE use, while some say they aren't needed. “…The legislation would repeal the subsection invalidated by the court and clarify the guidelines used in IREs,” writes Pedersen. Another section of the bill aims to establish a strong formulary system. “…According to a description of the bill, the formulary would organize medication and dosage amounts as either ‘pre-approved' or ‘requires authorization' based on Federal Drug Administration approval status and evidence of effectiveness,” writes Pedersen.

3) DMEC Releases White Paper on Behavioral Health

The Disability Management Employer Coalition and The Standard recently released a white paper entitled,  “Managing Optimal Work Performance Through Behavioral Health,” which includes stages of awareness, and steps to take when addressing a mental health issue in employees, writes DMEC Media Consultant John Jordan. Stages include looking at “early clinical symptoms,” looking at the employee’s “general well-being” and/or “substance use conditions.” An interesting note on generational behavior: “…According to a recent survey, 83.5% of Generation Y and Millennials are more willing to discuss mental health. 54% believe mental health is treatable and/or manageable.”

4) FL: Mosaic Sued for Employee’s Alleged Chemical Burn Accident

Mulberry resident Misael Martinez Torres of McCormick Fabrication Services has filed a lawsuit against Mosaic after ammonia allegedly flowed out of a pipe he was repairing for the company, writes Richard Danielson of the Tampa Bay Times. The “…ammonia burst out, covering the lower half of his body, the suit contends. He suffered second- and third-degree burns to his legs and genitals, as well as other injuries to his legs,” per the article. Torres and his wife “…are seeking a jury trial and damages of more than $15,000, the minimum amount required to file a case in circuit court.” Mosaic Public Affairs Manager Jackie Barron told the media outlet safety of workers and contractors is a priority for the company, but she wouldn’t talk about “ongoing litigation” at press time.

5) PA: Alleged Accident with Smoothie Cart Leads to Airline Attendant Filing a Lawsuit

Flight attendant Judith Fedyszyn and partner Stan Fedyszyn have filed a lawsuit against Philadelphia-based New York Ice Cream Inc. (doing business as “Jamba Juice and Peet’s) and Texas-based Jamba, Inc., alleging Judith “…was barreled over by a juice store’s supply cart and seriously injured,” writes Nicholas Malfitano of the Pennsylvania Record. After the Philadelphia airport accident, “…Judith is said to have sustained a non-displaced fracture of the olecranon, radial head fracture of her elbow, ligament sprain of her cervical spine, hip contusion, knee contusion and injuries to her neck and head.” The Fedyszyns request “…damages in excess of $50,000, plus all costs and damages as are legally appropriate."

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