Highlights of Noteworthy Decisions

Decision 3185 17
R. McCutcheon - S. Sahay - K. Hoskin
  • Recurrences (compensable injury) (stress, mental)

The worker was a nurse at a chronic care hospital. The Board granted the worker entitlement in October 2007 for traumatic mental stress due to threats and verbal abuse from a cognitively-impaired patient. The worker returned to work in January 2008. The worker appealed a decision of the Appeals Resolution Officer denying entitlement for a recurrence in June 2012.

The Panel noted that the scope of entitlement for mental stress has been expanded by amendments to the WSIA but that entitlement is still excluded for mental stress related to employment decisions or actions.
The Panel found that the worker did not have entitlement for a recurrence in 2012. There was a lack of continuity of treatment or medication from 2008 to 2012. The claim for the recurrence in 2012 was related to discipline at work during the previous year. To the extent that the worker's stress in 2012 was work-related, it was related to employment decisions and discipline, which are excluded from entitlement under the WSIA. Further, the precipitating event for psychological treatment in 2012 was a family crisis.
The appeal was dismissed.