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Medical Rehabilitation Nurses

Medical Rehabilitation Nurses Section

Our Mission

The Industrial Commission’s Medical Rehabilitation Nurses Section employs five registered nurses who are responsible for different geographic segments of the state. These nurses provide medical rehabilitation consultative services to a variety of workers’ compensation audiences, including injured workers, insurance carriers, attorneys, rehabilitation professionals, health care providers, and when ordered by the Industrial Commission’s hearing officers. They assist with case management and medical rehabilitation needs in the event difficulties arise in areas of communication, trust, confusion, misunderstanding, or any other problem that interferes with the ongoing progress of returning injured workers to their maximum functional capabilities. The Nurse Consultants seek to collaboratively facilitate and coordinate high quality and effective medical care and rehabilitation such that an injured worker’s maximum level of functionality is optimized, both physically and mentally.

What We Do

Ongoing rehabilitation case management of injured workers covered by the Workers’ Compensation Act is usually provided by Medical and Vocational Rehabilitation Professionals employed in private industry. The Industrial Commission’s Medical Rehabilitation Nurse Consultants are available to assist with difficult cases temporarily, promoting ongoing case management within the private industry. The Nurse Consultants also perform specific rehabilitation activities as ordered by hearing officers within the Industrial Commission. The Industrial Commission’s Medical Rehabilitation Nurses Section services are available to anyone who wishes to express concern regarding an injured worker’s care or rehabilitation.

Important Information

Mandatory Rehabilitation Professionals Training

The N.C. Industrial Commission has adopted a mandatory requirement for Rehabilitation Professionals. Effective July 1, 2011, every Rehabilitation Professional providing rehabilitation services shall be required to complete the comprehensive course entitled Workers' Compensation Case Management in NC: A Basic Primer for Medical and Vocational Case Managers, in order to be recognized as "Qualified" under Section IV of the NCIC Rules for Rehabilitation Professionals. The deadline for completion by RPs currently practicing rehabilitation has passed (7/1/2013), and the NCIC Registry for Workers’ Compensation Rehabilitation Professionals on this website has been updated accordingly. Click here to read the March 17, 2011 Minutes for more details. For class availability and registration, click here. If you have questions, contact Karen Smith at 919-807-2618 or via e-mail

Rehabilitation Forms

For a list of Forms related to Nursing and Rehabilitation, please Click Here

Rules for Utilization of Rehab Professionals in Workers’ Comp Claims

There are a set of rules that govern the utilization of Rehabilitation Professionals in Workers’ Compensation Claims. To view these rules, please click on the link above. For a Summary of these rules, click here. You may also download a pamphlet version of the Summary by
right-clicking here and selecting "Save Target As..."

Registry of Workers’ Compensation Rehabilitation Professionals

The Rehabilitation Professionals providing services for injured workers in North Carolina must be qualified in accordance with our Rehabilitation Rules. Each Medical Professional must have a North Carolina Registered Nursing License to practice (unless they reside in a compact state). Both Medical and Vocational Professionals are required to have at least one of the seven (7) certifications listed in Section IV of the Rules (see above) to practice as a Qualified Rehabilitation Professional (QRP), or meet the criteria listed in that Section to practice as a Conditional Rehabilitation Professional (CRP) under the supervision of a QRP while being allowed a maximum of two (2) years to obtain a certification establishing a QRP status.

Click here to view a more detailed explanation of the Registry of Workers’ Compensation Rehabilitation Professionals.

To go directly to the Registry, Click Here.
(NOTE: This registry will be updated each week no later than 5:00 P.M. Friday with each Friday’s update including all changes received no later than 2:00 P.M. the previous Thursday.

Rehabilitation Contacts

The Nursing & Rehabilitation Section consists of six registered nurses posted throughout North Carolina and two support staff members. The telephone numbers and e-mail addresses for the Nursing Section are as follows:

Title Name Email Phone
Section Director Karen B. Smith
BSN, RN, COHN-S (919) 807-2618
Nurse Consultant
Eastern NC
RTP Area
Caron Cross
RN, BSN, COHN-S (919) 807-2616
Nurse Consultant
Western NC
Triad Area
Emily McKinney
RN, BA, CCM (919) 807-2616
Office Assistant Judy A. Fisher (919) 807-2616

NCIC Rehabilitation
Advisory Board

The N.C. Industrial Commission Rehabilitation Advisory Board functions as a resource for the Industrial Commission, the rehabilitation community, the medical community, the legal community, and any other parties working for the benefit of injured workers in North Carolina. For a list of the board’s members, Click Here.

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