Hearst Media Buys Work-Loss Data Institute

The giant media firm Hearst has acquired Work-Loss Data Institute (WLDI), a provider of healthcare data and guidelines to the workers’ compensation industry.

Terms of the deal were not disclosed.

WLDI will become part of Hearst’s MCG Health division, led by President and CEO Jon Shreve, which supplies care management guidelines and software for health insurers and providers.

WLDI is the publisher of the web-based Official Disability Guidelines, known primarily as ODG, a widely used treatment guidelines for workers’ compensation and disability in the U.S., primarily utilized by insurance companies, employers, healthcare providers and state-run agencies. It provides evidence-based decision support for managing medical treatment, disability duration, and utilization review in workers’ compensation and disability cases.

Phil LeFevre, WLDI senior vice president of business development, will join MCG in a leadership role and report to Shreve.

Phil Denniston is stepping down as president and CEO of WLDI and will continue in a consulting position. Co-founder Pat Whelan will also continue in a consulting position.

Hearst’s major interests include cable television networks such as A&E, HISTORY, Lifetime and ESPN; global ratings agency Fitch Group; 30 television stations; newspapers such as the Houston Chronicle, San Francisco Chronicle and Albany Times Union, and nearly 300 magazines.

MCG, which will now include WLDI, is part of the Hearst health network that also includes FDB (First Databank), Zynx Health, Homecare Homebase and MedHOK, Hearst Health International, Hearst Health Ventures and the Hearst Health Innovation Lab.

Bailey Southwell & Co. served as strategic and financial advisors to WLDI.