In the Matter of the Compensation of Tommy S. Arms, Claimant.
SAIF CORPORATION and Harrington-Campbell, Inc. - Harrington Construction, Respondents. Tommy S. ARMS, Petitioner,
and submitted September 26, 2017
Workers' Compensation Board 1005062, 1002902;
Christine Jensen argued the cause and fled the briefs for
Masters argued the cause and fled the brief for respondents.
DeHoog, Presiding Judge, and Egan, Chief Judge, and Aoyagi,
who has an accepted claim for a disc herniation at C5-6,
seeks judicial review of an order of the Workers'
Compensation Board. The board held that proposed surgical
treatment for the worsening of claimant's preexisting
cervical condition at C6-7, caused in major part by treatment
of the C5-6 disc herniation, is not compensable, because the
worsened condition is a "consequential condition, "
and the medical treatment is not directed only to the
consequential condition but to the preexisting component of
claimant's condition. Held: The board erred in
concluding that the treatment is not compensable because it
is directed in part to a condition that preexisted the
worsening of claimant's condition. If claimant's work
injury (or its treatment) was the major contributing cause of
the worsening of claimant's preexisting condition, then
surgery directed to the treatment of that worsened condition
is compensable, whether or not the surgery also incidentally
treats that portion of claimant's C6-7 condition that
preexisted the accepted C5-6 disc herniation.
Or.App. 218] EGAN, C. J.
seeks review of an order of the Workers' Compensation
Board holding that proposed surgical treatment for the
worsening of claimant's preexisting cervical condition is
not compensable, because the worsened condition is a
"consequential condition, " and the medical
treatment is not directed only to the consequential condition
but to the preexisting component of claimant's condition.
We conclude that the board erred and we therefore remand the
case to the board for reconsideration.
issue in this case concerns a question of statutory
construction with respect to the interplay of ORS 656.245 and
ORS 656.225. We set out those statutes, as relevant, for
"For every compensable injury, the insurer or the
self-insured employer shall cause to be provided medical
services for conditions caused in material part by the injury
for such period as the nature of the injury or the process of
the recovery requires, subject to the limitations in ORS
656.225, including such medical services as may be required
after a determination of permanent disability. In addition,
for consequential and combined conditions described in ORS
656.005(7), the insurer or the self-insured employer ...