Administering Idaho's Workers' Compensation Law

2016 Annual Seminar

Seminar Descriptions and Speaker Bios (back)

KEYNOTE ADDRESS 9:00-10:30: (top)

  • Is the Worker's Compensation World Ready for the Gig Economy
    Thomas A. Robinson

  • For 29 years Thomas Robinson has served in various capacities at Larson’s Workers Compensation Law, the pre-eminent legal treatise on the subject. He is now a co-author for Larson’s. He is also a contributing author and editor for 7 other Lexis Nexis publications on workers compensation law and has been a featured speaker on the subject for many years.

  • Gig Economy will review current trends in employee misclassification that are applicable for Uber and lift Lyft, and discuss them in light of the hundreds of Taxi driver cases earlier in workers compensation law. Attendees will discern issues related to employment statute, the issue of independent contracts, and whether traditional workers compensation conceits are sufficiently flexible to handle the gig economy.

10:45-11:45 SESSIONS: (top)

                    • Myth Busters: How Evidence Changes Medical Practice - Treatment Guidelines
                      Kathryn Mueller, MD, MPH, FACOEM

                    • Kathryn Mueller has served as the Medical Director for the Colorado Division of Workers’ Compensation since the inception of this position in 1991. Dr. Mueller is board certified in Occupational Medicine and is a Professor in the Department Physiatry and Rehabilitation Medicine and the School of Public Health at the University of Colorado at Denver. In her position with Colorado Workers’ Compensation she edited and assisted in the development of ten medical treatment guidelines which are evidence based, to the extent possible and include in depth recommendations for opioid use in chronic non-cancer pain.  Her activities with ACOEM are numerous including serving as Secretary/Treasurer, two terms on the Board of Directors and currently as President. She contributed significantly to the ACOEM Occupational Practice Guidelines as Co Chair of the chronic pain guidelines and has a member of the opioid guideline committee. She was an author for the Workers Compensation Research Institute’s publication “Interstate Variations in Use of Narcotics  Dr. Mueller also served as a Section Editor for the 6th edition of the AMA Guides to the Evaluation of Permanent Impairment.

                    • Myth Busters will provide clinical examples of how evidence based cases illustrate improvement in care. Attendees will learn to apply evidence based treatment guidelines to medical treatment.

                    • 21st Century Mind Reading: Leveraging Social Media and OSINT for Claims Investigations
                      Neal Custer P.I. and Dylan Evans

                    • Neal Custer is the Founder and President of Reveal Digital Forensics and Security and Custer Agency, Inc. Custer Agency, formed in 1995, provides investigative, digital forensics and security services. Reveal was formed in in 2011 to specifically focus on the digital forensics & information security part of the business. Neal has over 45 years of experience in investigations and security management, including law enforcement and corporate. He has his degree in Criminology and is a Certified Protection Professional, a Certified Fraud Examiner and a Certified Professional Investigator. He has been an Adjunct Professor at Boise State University in the Criminal Justice Department since 1997, most recently teaching a course in Cybercrime.  

                    • Dylan Evans (ACE, CEH, CHFI, A+, Network+) is Vice President of Digital Forensics and a digital forensic investigator with Custer Agency, Inc. He has worked in all elements of computer and network technology since he started programming his own software in the fourth grade. Dylan is a Certified Ethical Hacker, Access Data Certified Examiner, Certified Computer Hacking Forensic Investigator, is A+ and Network+ certified, and also holds a bachelor's degree in psychology.  Dylan has testified as an expert witness in digital forensic cases, coauthors the "Protecting your Assets" column of the Idaho Statesman Business Insider, and co-taught an introductory course on cybercrime at Boise State University with Neal Custer. In his personal life he is a passionate digital painter, writer, and musician, and is currently working on material for his second album.

                    • As of this year, nearly two-thirds of all Americans own a smartphone. In the 18-29 year old demographic, that percentage of ownership increases to nearly 90%. Social media addiction as integrated itself into the lives of a huge portion of the population, and that means a goldmine of potential intelligence during investigations. Neal Custer and Dylan Evans of Custer Agency will identify the most effective methods of investigating social media accounts and other OSINT (open-source intelligence) sources, building an online profile for your case subjects, and most importantly using the information found online to aid in real world physical surveillance.

                    • Shoulder Instability: Diagnosis and Management of the Most Common Work Related Injury in a Young Athletic Population
                      Joseph Lynch, MD

                    • Dr. Lynch is native to the Pacific Northwest and a graduate of Harvard University.  He completed medical school at Oregon Health Sciences University graduating first in his class in 2002. He then completed a residency in orthopedic surgery, as well as a fellowship in shoulder & elbow surgery at the University of Washington.  In addition to being a fellowship-trained, board-certified shoulder and elbow subspecialist, Dr. Lynch also maintains a Certificate of Added Qualification in Sports Medicine from the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery.  He brings a wealth of expertise and experience to the Treasure Valley area. His passion for family and the outdoors made returning to the Boise area a personal aspiration and focus for his professional career.

                      Dr. Lynch has been an actively practicing shoulder surgeon since 2008. As a former Navy Commander and Associate Professor of Surgery, Dr. Lynch has taught the requisite skills of shoulder surgery to numerous orthopedic surgical residents and countless medical students from across the country.  Multiple honors, achievements and awards color his professional career.  He has published numerous peer-reviewed scientific articles concerning the shoulder and elbow, has presented at regional and national meetings, and is an active reviewer for several peer-review journals dedicated to the practice of orthopedic surgery.  In his previous career with the military, he had the privilege of serving as the Director of the Division of Sports Medicine & Shoulder Surgery for the United States Navy. In this capacity, Dr. Lynch was afforded the opportunity to both teach and practice orthopedic surgery throughout the country as well as abroad.
                    • As the former Director of the Division of Sports Medicine & Shoulder Surgery for the United States Navy, Dr. Lynch will discuss his experience managing shoulder instability - the most common work-related diagnosis affecting the shoulder in an active duty military population.  The purpose of this talk will be to outline the definition of shoulder instability, discuss how the diagnosis is made by history and confirmed by physical examination.  The talk will touch on key subjective and objective findings on physical examination as well as on imaging.  The talk will also discuss the various challenges of surgical and nonsurgical management.  Lastly, the talk will outline the typical recovery process and return to work program used in young active patients who desire to return to a physically demanding job.

                    1:00-2:00 SESSIONS: (top)

                • The AMA 6th Edition for the Determination of Permanent Impairment: What's it all about?
                  Kathryn Mueller, MD, MPH, FACOEM

                • This presentation will provide an overview of the basic principles of the 6th edition AMA guidelines. Attendees will learn to list the simple areas assessed for impairment ratings in the AMA guidelines 6th edition.

                • Telehealth: An Innovative Care Delivery Model
                  Krista M. Stadler, RN, BSN

                • Krista M. Stadler is a Registered Nurse who is passionate about improving a patient’s access to quality, cost effective care regardless of their geographic location. She currently serves as Director of Telehealth Services at St. Luke’s Health System based in Boise, Idaho. In addition to her administrative duties, she speaks nationally guiding and promoting a variety of Telehealth initiatives and programs throughout the county. Prior to relocating to Idaho in 2015, Krista spent 7+ years building one of the largest Telehealth programs west of the Mississippi. Her experience in Telehealth includes the design and implementation of TeleICU, Teleneurology, Telebehavioral Health, Telepharmacy and other applications in the inpatient and outpatient setting.

                • Telehealth will define telehealth and describe a cases and services related to professional telehealth implementation. Following this presentation guests will be able to restate these definitions, identify obstacles that must be mitigated when implementing a telehealth program, and identify emerging trends that will be coming into the telehealth space.

                2:15-3:15 SESSIONS: (top)

            • Assessing PTSD
              Craig Beaver, Ph.D, ABPP-CN

            • Craig Beaver is a licensed psychologist in the States of Idaho, Oregon and Washington and have been licensed in Idaho since 1984. He has completed his undergraduate training in psychology at the University of Oregon and a Ph.D. in clinical psychology at Miami University of Ohio, an APA approved clinical training program. His clinical internship was at the Ft. Miley VA Medical Center in San Francisco, an APA approved clinical internship, in coordination with the UC San Francisco Medical School. He has completed several years of additional post doctorate supervision with Dr. Lloyd Cripe, Diplomate in Clinical Neuropsychology. Later, he did supervision with Dr. David Shapiro and others in Forensic Psychology. In addition to being licensed as a psychologist, he holds a Diplomate in Clinical Neuropsychology from the American Board of Professional Psychology/American Board of Clinical Neuropsychology, which recognizes my expertise in brain-behavior relationships. Beaver was the Director of Psychological and Neuropsychological Services at Saint Alphonsus Regional Medical Center from 1984 through 1988. He was also the Director of Neuropsychological Services at Idaho Elks Rehabilitation Hospital where he helped design and establish a CARF-accredited outpatient and inpatient brain injury treatment program and helped manage that program for more than 23 years. Beaver also has a private practice providing psychological and neuropsychological assessment and therapy services.

            • The first objective of Assessing PTSD is to provide a general overview of the definition of PTSD and a description of the etiology and emotional and neurological changes that can accompany PTSD.  The second objective will be to discuss current methods for evaluating symptom validity and psychological methods of evaluation for PTSD claimants.  The third objective will be to provide a description of the current treatment modalities recommended for PTSD and their general effectiveness. 
            • Jurisdictional Issues in Worker's Compensation Law
              Thomas A. Robinson

            • In the early days of worker's compensation law, when the majority of covered employment was in manufacturing, when the typical employee usually lived close to the workplace, and when employees often spent decades with the same employer and at the same facility, jurisdictional disputes were rare.  Times have changed, particularly during the past three decades or so.  Employees are more mobile.  Employment often isn't tied to a particular work site. The employee can reside in one state, be recruited - via telephone or computer - from another, perform his or her work in yet another, only then to find that the employment moves from site to site and even state to state.  Where injuries occur or occupational diseases or conditions are contracted, what jurisdiction is to be used?  Which state has the largest stake in determining the rights of the employer and the employee?  

              Jurisdictional Issues will look at issues related to the modern work force.  Throughout Robinson will review the special rules that affect professional athletes who find themselves in multiple states and at multiple sites during a given season.  Participants will review the basic workers' compensation tests that must be coordinated: place of the injury, place of the employment contract, place of the primary employment relationship, and place of residence.  The group will also discuss how a number of states have passed reciprocity statutes to handle some of the conflict issues.  

            • Navigation, Robotics, and Spine Surgery
              David B. Verst, MD

            • Dr. David Verst was born in Kentucky, completing high school at Newport Catholic High School in 1986. He attended Northern Kentucky University and graduated Cum Laude in 1990. He earned his Medical Degree from the University of Louisville School of Medicine in 1995. Next he pursued an Orthopedic Surgery Residency at Akron General Medical Center from July 1995 through June 2000. Following his Ohio experience he completed a Spine Fellowship at San Francisco Spine Institute focusing on complex spinal diseases affecting the nervous system. Dr. Verst earned his Board Certification by the American Board of Orthopedic Surgery specializing in spine surgery in 2003. He was elected as a Fellow of the American Academy of Orthopedic surgeons in 2005. Currently Dr. Verst serves as Chairman of Orthopedic Surgery at St Luke’s Wood River Medical Center.

            • Navigation, Robotics, and Spine Surgery will outline the innovative techniques utilizing navigational methods and robotics during the use in spine surgery. Attendees will learn to recognize robotics and navigation provide better precision, accuracy, and efficiency in spine surgery. This will result in improved safety and better outcomes in spines surgery.

            3:30-4:30 SESSIONS: (top)

        • Case Law Review
          Michael G. McPeek and Bruce Skaug

        • Michael G. McPeek has 27 years experience in representing employers, sureties, and self-insured employers in workers compensation cases. He was inducted in 2014 as a Fellow of the College of Workers’ Compensation Lawyers.

        • Bruce Skaug has represented injured people and built a growing team of attorneys and support staff at his self titled law firm, Skaug Law, PC. In his time as an attorney he as recovered millions for his clients and is a member of the Idaho Trial Lawyers Association and the American Association for Justice.

        • Case Law will review significant Industrial Commission and Idaho Supreme Court Cases between August 2015 and August 2016. Attendees will be able to highlight key legal concepts and the application of those concepts to facts to provide understanding of significant new decisions.

        • Multi-Generational Diversity and Communication
          Ann Beechum, Chief Administrative Officer Career Source

        • Ann Beechum is responsible for all strategies and implementation of systems related to HR, Facilities, and Administrative Support.  DiSC facilitator and public speaker on subjects relevant to compensation, employee relations, organizational development. Her passion and education is focused on human achievement and how the sum of all of us is always more than what we can accomplish alone.  Because of her personal experience as a mother of four grown children and three grown foster sons  who lives with her husband of 34 years, her 86 year old mother-in-law, her son, daughter-in-law, and six and four- year old granddaughters (and her mother and father live 3 miles away) – her central preoccupation has been multi-generational communication in the workplace.  My expertise lies with developing creative ways to expand jobs and salary ranges so great employees don’t have to wait for someone in management to die to achieve a “manager” salary, because, after all, we all know that not all innovative employees who can also train others are suited for management. She also have been successful in decreasing benefit costs by offering staff viable options to “traditional” health care plans & then providing education and assistance.
        • Multi-Generational Diversity will outline generational differences and provide a progressive explanation of why different generations think, act, and perform the way they do. It will also offer practical solutions for the challenges having 4 generations in workplace presents. Attendees will leave with a greater understanding of why members of generational cohorts behave and think the way they do as well as understand how other members of other generations see you. They will also learn to communicate to members of other generations in a way they can understand in order to cultivate trust and increased work efficiencies and effectiveness.