Celebrating Dr. Sarah Johnson’s Contributions to QME Online Course – Now Available

Dr. Sarah Johnson, a COEH Alum, partnered with the Department of Industrial Relations (DIR), Division of Workers’ Compensation (DWC), to update the online course, Evaluating California’s Injured Workers: Qualified Medical Evaluators, launched on October 11, 2021.


Dr. Johnson graduated from the University of California San Francisco Occupational and Environmental Medicine (OEM) Residency Program in June 2020, and is Board Certified in Occupational and Environmental Medicine. She worked with DWC during a rotation in spring 2020, and was heavily involved in updating curriculum related to medical-legal determination on apportionment and anti-bias training.


This course update expands upon the previous offering launched in 2017, which included topics such as how to prepare for a QME evaluation and how to identify the components of a complete report, to include a deeper dive on legal requirements of substantial medical evidence, injury causation and apportionment, and more. This course is also supported by the COEH Continuing Education program, which provides both Continuing Medical Education (CME) and Board of Registered Nursing (BRN) credit for the training.


You can learn more and register for the free course online here.


Dr. Sarah Johnson obtained her undergraduate degree from Johns Hopkins University and attended medical school at the University of Illinois at Chicago. She is also a proud alum of Teach for America. Prior to moving to San Francisco, she completed two years of general surgery in Chicago. Her interests and abilities, particularly in population-based approaches and prevention, drew her to Occupational Medicine and the OEM program at UCSF, where she completed her OEM Residency in 2020. Dr. Johnson currently serves as an Associate Medical Director at WorkCare and specializes in Medical Review and COVID-19 case classification.




About the Course:


Evaluating California’s Injured Workers: Qualified Medical Evaluators was developed for current Qualified Medical Evaluators (QMEs), those interested in becoming a QME, and anyone interested in the QME process. QMEs play a critical role in resolving disputes within the workers’ compensation system.


Course Learning Outcomes:


At the completion of this activity, the learner will be able to:

  • Describe how to prepare for a QME evaluation

  • Identify the components of a complete report and potential pitfalls

  • Identify and understand the concept of apportionment, and how it applies in the California workers’ compensation system

  • Differentiate between causation of permanent disability and causation of injury, and describe the types of allowable factors in determining causation of permanent disability

  • Describe the legal requirements for substantial medical evidence, and apply these standards to a medical-legal determination on apportionment

  • Recognize the law requires impartiality and prohibits discrimination against injured workers based on protected characteristics including sexual orientation, race, gender, age, national origin, and religion

  • Identify applicable Administrative Rules including how to schedule QME appointments, how to add or close a QME office, and how to place your QME status as unavailable or inactive

  • Discuss the importance of issuing timely reports and the consequences of late reporting


Accreditation Information:


This activity has been planned and implemented in accordance with the accreditation requirements and policies of the California Medical Association (CMA) through the joint providership of The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health (COEH) and the State of California Department of Industrial Relations Division of Workers’ Compensation. The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health is accredited by the CMA to provide continuing medical education for physicians.


The Center for Occupational and Environmental Health designates this enduring material for a maximum of 2.0 AMA PRA Category 1 Credits™. Physicians should claim only the credit commensurate with the extent of their participation in the activity.


Provider approved by the California Board of Registered Nursing, Provider Number 12983, for 2.0 contact hours.