The Colorado Cost Containment Certification program incentivizes businesses to improve safety protocols by reducing workers’ comp costs. From getting started to the application process, here’s everything you need to know about the Colorado Cost Containment Certification. Keep reading to find out more!

What is Colorado Cost Containment Certification?

The Colorado cost containment certification is a program designed by the Division of Workers’ Compensation to help employers reduce injuries in the workplace and lower overall insurance-related costs. This program allows businesses to become certified by demonstrating they’ve had a qualified risk management program for at least one full year. Once approved, employers are eligible for a reduction of up to 10% in their workers’ compensation insurance premiums. Through this premium cost containment program, Colorado hopes to protect and promote its workforce’s integrity, vitality, and safety while simultaneously providing benefits to certified employers.

What are the minimum requirements to apply?

To apply for the Cost Containment Certification, you must have the below six steps fully documented and in place for one full year prior to submission. The Cost Containment Board meets on the first Wednesday of each month and will review your certification application. You must submit your application and supporting documentation by the 20th day of the previous month.

Certification program overview

Colorado businesses must first establish a comprehensive safety program that meets specific criteria before they apply. Here are the six requirements organizations will need to include in their certification safety program.

1. Declaration of Company Safety Policy

Before beginning your cost containment certification application, top management must commit to occupational safety through a safety policy declaration statement that they must sign and date.

Employers will need to provide a copy of your organization’s safety policy before submitting their application. Make sure your organization’s safety policy declaration statement covers the following:

  • Reflects the philosophy of top management.
  • Acknowledges that your company’s main priority is the safety and health of its employees.
  • Documents employer and employee roles and responsibilities in regard to safety.
  • Dated signatures from top management.
  • The policy is easily visible and posted in an accessible area for easy employee access.

2. Safety Coordinator or Committee

The Safety Committee or Safety Coordinator plays a vital role in effectively communicating loss prevention and should have a clear list of tasks and objectives. Roles must be documented and signed/dated by the Safety Coordinator. If a safety committee is utilized, meeting agendas and minutes must be kept and meetings must be held quarterly (minimum).

3. Clearly Defined Safety Rules

Safety rules must be clearly defined to prevent losses. Employees should learn the rules while training and have access to view them at all times. It’s important to ensure the rules are both general as well as job-specific:

  • General safety rules: An organization’s set of rules that apply to everyone in your organization.
  • Job-specific safety rules: on the other hand, apply to specific job tasks.

PRO TIP: An effective way your organization can create safety rules is by conducting a comprehensive job hazard analysis, a tool employers can use to evaluate job-specific tasks and the potential hazards that correspond with those tasks. You can check out a sample of safety rules here.

Implementing and Reinforcing Safety Rules

It’s essential to schedule a time to meet face-to-face with employees to discuss the rules and answer whatever questions your employees have. This is an excellent opportunity for the employer to set clear expectations about your organization’s safety culture and ensure your entire team is on the same page. After discussing the safety rules, The Cost Containment Board strongly advises that employees sign and date a document acknowledging they have read and understand the rules and conduct that are expected from them. Employers can enforce safety rules through a progressive discipline policy, following the below steps: Verbal warnings

  • Written warnings
  • Suspension
  • Termination

4. Safety Training

To ensure a safe workplace, it’s critical that employees are educated on the various hazards involved with their specific job role. New employees should undergo documented safety orientation upon hire. The Premium Cost Containment Board requires documented safety training or safety meetings at a minimum of every quarter. Attendance must be documented at these trainings or meetings through the use of a sign-in sheet.

Although the Cost Containment Certification Board will only need to see your documentation for safety training on a quarterly basis, it’s recommended to hold monthly team meetings and have employees provide feedback after trainings to cultivate a strong safety culture.

5. Designated Medical Provider List

Employers can ensure staff has access to immediate treatment by designating four SelectNet (Note: SelectNet is Pinnacol specific) medical providers to assist with work-related injuries. The appointed providers will be identified and communicated to employees in the following ways:

  • New employees must sign and date a Designated Provider Notification Letter
  • After a workplace injury occurs, copies of the Designated Provider Notification Letter are made for the injured worker.

How to communicate your Colorado medical providers to your employees

Communication is critical to establishing an effective relationship between the employer and the designated medical provider. Here are several ways to become acquainted with the chosen providers:

  • Plan to visit the office of your designated medical provider.
  • Invite providers to tour your facility.
  • Arranging for them to send you a status update following each medical appointment.
  • Provide a document of your organization’s job descriptions so they’re aware of the physical requirements of each position.
  • Send a copy of your modified duty policy and preplanned modified duty tasks so they understand how employees can return to work safely.

6. Policies and Procedures for Claims Management

Claims management are documented procedures and policies your organization will follow after a workplace injury has occurred. These procedures should be clearly stated and easy to understand.

  • Employers must conduct a thorough investigation to properly identify safety hazards
  • Complete accident investigation forms for all employee-related injuries and implement corrective action.
  • Develop a return to work program (if applicable).

How to apply for the CO Cost Containment Certification?

1. Complete application steps:

The first step is to complete the six required steps and provide relevant documentation at the time of submission for the last year.

2. Fill out the application:

Complete the Cost Containment Certification application.

3. Submit your application to the Colorado Division of Workers’ Comp:

Submit your completed application with the required documentation to Colorado’s Premium Cost Containment Program Board by the 20th day of the previous month.

All submissions should be sent to:

Colorado Division of Workers’ Compensation

633 17th Street, Suite 400

Denver, CO 80202

Attn: Premium Cost Containment Board

*editors note: Allison is a member of the Premium Cost Containment Board


Colorado’s Cost Containment Certification | Step 1 – 6 . (n.d.).