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§ 9792.21.1. Medical Evidence Search Sequence.

8 CA ADC § 9792.21.1BARCLAYS OFFICIAL CALIFORNIA CODE OF REGULATIONS

Barclays Official California Code of Regulations Currentness
Title 8. Industrial Relations
Division 1. Department of Industrial Relations
Chapter 4.5. Division of Workers' Compensation
Subchapter 1. Administrative Director -Administrative Rules
Article 5.5.2. Medical Treatment Utilization Schedule
8 CCR § 9792.21.1
§ 9792.21.1. Medical Evidence Search Sequence.
(a) Treating physicians and medical reviewers shall conduct the following medical evidence search sequence for the evaluation and treatment of injured workers.
(1) Search the recommended guidelines set forth in the current MTUS to find a recommendation applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
(2) In the limited situation where a medical condition or injury is not addressed by the MTUS or if the MTUS' presumption of correctness is being challenged, then:
(A) Search the most current version of ACOEM or ODG to find a recommendation applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury. Choose the recommendation that is supported with the best available evidence according to the MTUS Methodology for Evaluating Medical Evidence set forth in section 9792.25.1. If no applicable recommendation is found, or if the treating physician or reviewing physician believes there is another recommendation supported by a higher quality and strength of evidence, then
(B) Search the most current version of other evidence-based medical treatment guidelines that are recognized by the national medical community and are scientifically based to find a recommendation applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury. Choose the recommendation that is supported with the best available evidence according to the MTUS Methodology for Evaluating Medical Evidence set forth in section 9792.25.1. Medical treatment guidelines can be found in the National Guideline Clearinghouse that is accessible at the following website address: www.guideline.gov/. If no applicable recommendation is found, or if the treating physician or reviewing physician believes there is another recommendation supported by a higher quality and strength of evidence, then
(C) Search for current studies that are scientifically-based, peer-reviewed, and published in journals that are nationally recognized by the medical community to find a recommendation applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury. Choose the recommendation that is supported with the best available evidence according to the MTUS Methodology for Evaluating Medical Evidence set forth in section 9792.25.1. A search for peer-reviewed published studies may be conducted by accessing the U.S. National Library of Medicine's database of biomedical citations and abstracts that is searchable at the following website: www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed. Other searchable databases may also be used.
(b) After conducting the medical evidence search in the sequence specified above:
(1) Treating Physicians
(A) If the medical condition or injury is not addressed by the MTUS, then the treating physician may provide in the Request for Authorization (RFA) or in an attachment to the RFA a citation to the guideline or study containing the recommendation he or she believes guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
1. The citation provided by the treating physician shall be the primary source relied upon which he or she believes contains the recommendation that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
2. If the treating physician provides more than one citation, then a narrative shall be included by the treating physician in the RFA or in an attachment to the RFA explaining how each guideline or study cited provides additional information that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury but is not addressed by the primary source cited.
(B) If the medical condition or injury is addressed by the MTUS but the treating physician is attempting to rebut the MTUS' presumption of correctness, then the treating physician shall provide in the RFA or in an attachment to the RFA the following: a clear and concise statement that the MTUS' presumption of correctness is being challenged; a citation to the guideline or study containing the recommendation he or she believes guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury; and a copy of the entire study or the relevant sections of the guideline containing the recommendation he or she believes guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
1. The citation and copy of the study or copy of the relevant sections of the guideline provided by the treating physician shall be the primary source relied upon which he or she believes contains the recommendation that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
2. If the treating physician provides more than one citation, then a copy of the additional study(ies) or copy of the additional relevant sections of the guideline(s) along with a narrative shall be included by the treating physician in the RFA or in an attachment to the RFA explaining how each guideline or study cited provides additional information that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury but is not addressed by the primary source cited.
(2) Utilization Review Physicians
(A) If the RFA is being modified, delayed or denied, then the Utilization Review physician shall provide in the Utilization Review decision, in addition to the requirements set forth in section 9792.9.1(e), a citation to the guideline or study containing the recommendation he or she believes guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
1. The citation provided by the Utilization Review physician shall be the primary source relied upon which he or she believes contains the recommendation that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
2. If the Utilization Review physician provides more than one citation, then a narrative shall be included by the reviewing physician in the Utilization Review decision explaining how each guideline or study cited provides additional information that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury but is not addressed by the primary source cited.
(3) Independent Medical Review Physicians
(A) If the Utilization Review Decision delays, denies or modifies an injured worker's request for treatment and review of that decision is requested through Independent Medical Review, then the Independent Medical Review physician shall provide in the Independent Medical Review decision, in addition to the requirements set forth in section 9792.10.6(d), a citation to the guideline or study containing the recommendation that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
1. The citation provided by the Independent Medical Review physician shall be the primary source he or she relied upon which contains the recommendation that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury.
2. If the Independent Medical Review physician provides more than one citation, then a narrative shall be included by the reviewing physician in the Independent Medical Review decision explaining how each guideline or study cited provides additional information that guides the reasonableness and necessity of the requested treatment that is applicable to the injured worker's medical condition or injury but is not addressed by the primary source cited.
(c) If the treating physician and/or the Utilization Review physician and/or the Independent Medical Review physician cited different guidelines or studies containing recommendations that are at variance with one another, the MTUS Methodology for Evaluating Medical Evidence set forth in section 9792.25.1 shall be applied by the reviewing physician to determine which one of the recommendations is supported by the best available evidence.
(d) The format of the citations provided by the treating physician, Utilization Review physician, and Independent Medical physician, shall include the following
(1) When citing the MTUS:
(A) Indicate the MTUS is being cited and the effective year of the guideline;
(B) Title of chapter (e.g., Low Back Complaints); and
(C) Section of chapter (e.g., Surgical Considerations).
(2) When citing other medical treatment guidelines:
(A) Title of organization publishing the guideline (e.g., ACOEM or ODG);
(B) Year of publication;
(C) Title of chapter; and
(D) Section of chapter.
(3) When citing a peer-reviewed study:
(A) First author's last name and first name initial;
(B) Published article title;
(C) Journal title (standard abbreviations may be used);
(D) Volume number;
(E) Year published; and
(F) Page numbers.
(e) Employers and their representatives, at their discretion, may approve medical treatment beyond what is covered in the MTUS or supported by the best available medical evidence in order to account for medical circumstances warranting an exception. The treating physician should provide clear documentation of the clinical rationale focusing on expected objective functional gains afforded by the requested treatment and impact upon prognosis.
Note: Authority cited: Sections 133, 4603.5, 5307.3 and 5307.27, Labor Code. Reference: Sections 77.5, 4600, 4604.5, 4610.5 and 5307.27, Labor Code.
HISTORY
1. New section filed 4-20-2015; operative 4-20-2015 pursuant to Government Code section 11343.4(b)(3) (Register 2015, No. 17).
This database is current through 6/17/22 Register 2022, No. 24
8 CCR § 9792.21.1, 8 CA ADC § 9792.21.1
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