Public Risk Magazine


Public Risk, PRIMA’s 10-time-per-year magazine, is the flagship publication of the  association. This publication provides risk managers with timely, focused information  in an easy-to-read format. Public Risk features articles from risk management  practitioners as well as industry professionals. Articles range from current trends,  risk management procedures and guidelines, legislation changes, spotlights and  more that will engage your office while keeping them informed!

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August 2018


August cover

Featured Articles

Seattle Risk Manager is the
2018 Public Risk Manager of The Year

Meet Jennifer Hills, ARM-P, CRM

By Jennifer Ackerman, CAE

Like most public entities, King County, Wash, was "Risk Averse." But Risk Management Director Jennifer Hills is re-focusing King County’s risk efforts to be “risk optimized.” 

Hills change of focus for the county’s risk management team enabled her to direct conversations and strategic management plans toward value creation, as well as comprehensive assessments of risks to facilitate quality decision-making. This culture shift helps King County leadership tolerate the correct risks, and therefore respond timely and more effectively to growing demands for government services.

“Since Jennifer came on, we’ve had a sea-change,” said Michael Gedeon, chief administrative office for the King County Department of Health. “Where before people would avoid risk management, now people see risk management as a place to partner and engage to solve problems early.”

Hills innovative approach has not only saved King County money, but earned her the prestigious PRIMA Public Risk Manager of the Year award. 

“I am really honored to get this award,” said Hills. “It recognizes the wonderful work being done by King County government and more importantly, the work of my staff. I have the most dedicated and talented risk management staff you can imagine.”

Hills received her award at PRIMA’s 2018 Annual Conference in Indianapolis in June. 

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Self-Driving Cars: A Look Into Municipalities' Future Responsibilities

By Kenny Smith

There are many organizations, industries and individuals carefully following the progress of self-driving vehicle technology and the developing infrastructure to support its integration into mainstream society. Currently there are 1.4 billion cars on the roadway; however, many of those cars will begin to be replaced by self-driving vehicles, potentially sooner than we expect. The public sector is a critical stakeholder with the potential to be significantly impacted by these advancements, as self-driving automobiles present a whole new risk exposure. In the same way self-driving vehicles will likely disrupt the structure of the automobile insurance industry, they will also alter the infrastructure of our communities—something that municipalities should begin to consider now. 

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Telemedicine and Workers' Compensation

By Fernando Branco, M.D., FAAPM&R

Telemedicine is a fairly new way to evaluate and treat patients. However, the dream is not necessarily new. We know from historical records that in the American Civil War, Union battlefield surgeons regularly consulted via telegraph with specialists in Washington, New York and Boston on the best ways to treat their patients. 

The first idea of telemedicine as we know it today appeared in the April 1924 issue of Radio News magazine. Yet other milestones mark telemedicine’s journey to where it is today. The first long distance consultations occurred in the beginning of the 20th century with the advent of radio and telephone. It took the invention and innovations of television, high fidelity radio and high speed data transmission to complete the first practical steps. The first uses of telemedicine to transmit video, images, and complex medical data occurred in the late 1950s. In 1959, for instance, the University of Nebraska used interactive telemedicine to transmit neurological examinations, which is widely considered the first case of a real-time video telemedicine consultation.

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