By Rob Schuette, The Real McCoy Staff
In accordance with the Federal Employees Compensation Act (FECA),
Fort McCoy is responsible for providing members of its federal
civilian work force with a safe and healthy work environment.
Lt. Col. Randall Eddy, Garrison Safety Officer for the
Installation Safety Office (ISO), said FECA also provides protections
and benefits to civilian employees injured during the performance of
At Fort McCoy, the ISO, along with the Fort McCoy Occupational
Health and Nursing Office (OHNO), and the U.S. Army Reserve Civilian
Personnel Advisory Center (CPAC) organized and present a course to
teach supervisors about workers' compensation procedures.
"We want to ensure everyone is capable of physically doing
their job. Or if they aren't, we will try to find them a job
where they can contribute to the mission."
Col. Randall Eddy,
Garrison Safety Officer
The course includes information/regulations/safety standards
from the Occupational Health and Safety Administration. Eddy said the
course will be offered on a quarterly basis at Fort McCoy to ensure
all supervisory personnel who need it can attend.
In addition to ensuring federal civilian personnel can fulfill
their employment obligations, keeping on top of workers' compensation
issues helps ensure Fort McCoy will continue to have sufficient
funding to support its military missions, he said.
"We want to ensure everyone is safe and healthful to
physically do their job," Eddy said. "Or if they aren't, we
will try to find them a job where they can still contribute to the
Workers' compensation claims cause lost productivity in the
installation work force and in the range of about $300,000-$400,000 in
total medical and compensation costs on a yearly basis from 2005-2007,
including long-term costs, Eddy said.
The program goals for supervisors are to understand their
responsibilities, and to reduce accidents and lost work days, Eddy
All federal civilian employees who suffer an on-the-job injury
requiring medical attention are referred to OHNO, unless the injury is
an emergency situation or life threatening, in which case they should
Barb Stafslien, OHNO nurse practitioner, said OHNO personnel
will evaluate the injury and provide appropriate treatment or refer
personnel to their personal health-care providers, if necessary.
Stafslien recently has been approved by the Fort Knox, Ky., Medical
Department Activity to perform nurse practitioner duties, including
"This will allow me to perform more comprehensive
examination and treatment duties, which I am qualified to do, to
support the work force," Stafslien said. This will increase their
wellness and well-being, and help them return to work as soon as
Eddy said filling out accident and injury reports with
appropriate details allows the ISO to review cases and note
similarities or safety situations that can be improved or corrected.
The training also helps supervisors organize their safety meetings,
which should be held on an approximately monthly basis.
Results of these meetings and any other safety concerns can be
forwarded to the Installation Safety Council's quarterly meeting for
review, discussion and any further actions, Eddy said.
Ann Sprain and Renee Herman of the CPAC Workers' Compensation
Section said the goal of the installation's program is for any
personnel who suffer physical injuries to return to work as soon as
possible and to again become productive members of the work force.
"Employees need to know their options on work and how to
make a decision about being paid," Sprain said. "They have
to know if they should take workers' compensation pay or, if they are
eligible, (any form of) retirement pay (or other compensation they may
be eligible for)."
For more information about Fort McCoy safety topics, call the
ISO at (608) 388-3403. For more information about OHNO services, call
(608) 388-3209/2414. For more information about CPAC workers'
compensation procedures, call (608) 388-2103/5516.
(See related story)