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October 21, 2003
Media Contact: Gary Stephenson 410-955-5384
EDWARD BERNACKI, M.D., M.P.H., AWARDED PRIZE FOR HIS WORK TO IMPROVE EMPLOYEE HEALTH AND SAFETY
Edward Bernacki, M.D., M.P.H., associate professor of medicine, director of the Division of Occupational Medicine and executive director of Health, Safety and Environment, of the Johns Hopkins University and Hospital, won this year’s Innovations in Occupational and Environmental Health award from the Occupational and Environmental Health Foundation and Pfizer Inc.
Bernacki received the award for his design of an Internet-based workers’ compensation claims management system. The system allows claims to be tracked and processed more easily, and it is linked to safety so that a hazardous situation, once reported, can be promptly corrected to prevent future accidents. The award includes a $25,000 grant to fully implement the program at Hopkins and track the resulting outcomes.
“Obviously, I am deeply honored to receive this award, but more important is the increasing national attention being paid to workplace health, safety and workers’ compensation issues,” Bernacki said. “Employers are aware more now than ever, that it is extremely important to prevent accidents and get the best medical care for their injured employees.”
Since joining Hopkins in 1991, Bernacki has increased the scope of the Division of Occupational Medicine to provide consulting, workers’ compensation management and occupational health, nursing and safety services to large corporations throughout the United States. Bernacki also manages the health and safety programs for the 42,000 employees spread throughout the Hopkins enterprise. In the latter role, Bernacki and his staff reduced the number of days paid for injured Hopkins employees from 5.5 per $100,000 of payroll in 1991 to 1.1 in 2002. During the same period, the number of claims for lost time due to workplace accidents was reduced from 22 per 1,000 employees to 5 per 1,000 employees.
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