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NICOLE NELSON vs. COUNTY OF SOLANO, Permissibly Self-Insured And Adjusted By INTERCARE HOLDINGS INSURANCE SERVICES

COUNTY OF SOLANO, Permissibly Self-Insured and Adjusted by INTERCARE HOLDINGS INSURANCE SERVICES NICOLE NELSON WORKERS’ COMPENSATION APPEALS BOARDSTATE OF CALIFORNIANICOLE NELSON, Applicant,vs.COUNTY OF SOLANO, Permissibly Self-Insured and Adjusted byINTERCARE HOLDINGS INSURANCE SERVICES, Defendants.Case No. ADJ8363948(Sacramento District Office)OPINION AND ORDER DENYING PETITION FOR REMOVAL            Defendant has filed a timely, verified Petition for Removal, requesting that the Appeals Board reverse the Order dated August 30, 2012, wherein the workers’ compensation administrative law judge (WCJ) denied defendant’s request for a replacement panel of qualified medical evaluators (QMEs). Defendant contends that the strict prohibition against ex parte communications between a party and a QME allows defendant to terminate the medical evaluation by the present QME and to obtain a new panel of QMEs. Applicant has filed an Answer. We have not received a report and recommendation from the WCJ.            Applicant, while employed as a. social worker from February 23, 2010, through February 23, 2011, claims to have sustained an industrial injury to her psyche. The injury is denied. While she was not represented by an attorney, she was evaluated by James O’Dowd, Psy.D., as panel QME pursuant to Labor Code section 4062.1.1 Dr. O’Dowd has filed reports dated September 23, 2011, November 28, 2011, and January 23, 2012.////// 1 Unless otherwise specified, all statutory references are to the Labor Code. ,             On October 20, 2011, Dr. O’Dowd sent three emails to applicant. First, he said that he would scan paperwork and send it to her that evening.2 Second, he sent her the claims adjuster’s phone number. Third, he informed her that he had found the Employee Disability Questionnaire, and that she was all set. He wrote: “I’ll call to confirm that you’ve received my emails.” On January 23, 2012, he wrote: “I’ve attached the document I will be sending to Tara [the claims adj

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