Using the PCN

Benjamin Little

NUsingPCNetwork of providers dedicated to quality care at reasonable cost

Small business owners are always on the lookout for ways to save money, but when it comes to medical costs associated with a worker’s injury it can sometimes seem these expenses are out of control.

Customers of SCF Arizona have the opportunity to manage these costs by designating a medical provider in the workers’ comp insurance carrier’s Preferred Connection Network (PCN). The members offer quality care often at rates discounted from their usual charges or from the Industrial Commission’s fee schedule.

The PCN is a statewide network of hospitals, occupational medical clinics, urgent care facilities, physicians, physical medicine providers and ancillary service providers. It also includes providers of durable medical equipment as well as those who provide other related medical services. PCN providers agree to produce the best possible patient outcomes and accept discounted rates, while working collaboratively to obtain maximum medical improvement and getting injured workers back to work as quickly, safely and cost effectively as possible.

As a bonus, network providers also agree to make referrals only to other medical providers within the PCN whenever possible.

Under Arizona law, an employer may designate a medical provider for an initial evaluation of the industrial injury. An injured worker may decide to return to this medical provider for any additional treatment, so designating a PCN provider is an important step any employer can take to control the medical costs of a claim. At SCF, it is our goal to provide injured workers the most effective medical treatment at a reasonable cost.

A PCN medical provider makes important evaluations about your injured worker:

  • The extent of the injury
  • Whether the worker has suffered permanent impairment
  • When the worker can return to work
  • Whether modified work can be offered

By designating a PCN medical provider, employers establish a communication link to the provider while maximizing healthcare management. Employers can then work with the physician to establish what a worker can safely do as he or she recovers, how soon the worker can return to some type of work and whether job modifications are necessary. Through this close communication, employers can educate the PCN provider about the nature of their business and the importance placed on early return-to-work programs.

The Preferred Connection Network is an integral part of SCF Arizona’s managed care program, which its customers regard as the most efficient way to provide quality medical care for injured workers while controlling medical costs. Other elements in SCF’s managed care program include medical bill review, pharmaceutical benefit management, and hospital and physical medicine utilization review. To learn more about PCN and SCF, visit

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