(820 ILCS 310/7)
(from Ch. 48, par. 172.42)
If any employee sustains any disablement, impairment, or
disfigurement, or dies and his or her disability, impairment,
disfigurement or death is caused by a disease aggravated by an exposure
of the employment or by an occupational disease arising out of and in
the course of his or her employment, such employee or such employee's
dependents, as the case may be, shall be entitled to compensation,
medical, surgical, hospital and rehabilitation care, prosthesis, burial
costs, and all other benefits, rights and remedies, in the same manner,
to the same extent and subject to the same terms, conditions and
limitations, except as herein otherwise provided, as are now or may
hereafter be provided by the "Workers' Compensation Act" for accidental
injuries sustained by employees arising out of and in the course of
their employment (except that the amount of compensation which shall be
paid for loss of hearing of one ear is 100 weeks) and for this purpose
the disablement, disfigurement or death of an employee by reason of an
occupational disease, arising out of and in the course of his or her
employment, shall be treated as the happening of an accidental injury.
(a) Loss of hearing for compensation purposes shall be
confined to the frequencies of 1,000, 2,000 and 3,000 cycles per second.
Loss of hearing ability for frequency tones above 3,000 cycles per second
are not to be considered as constituting disability for hearing.
(b) The percent of hearing loss, for purposes of the
determination of compensation claims for occupational deafness,
shall be calculated as the average in decibels for the thresholds
of hearing for the frequencies of 1,000, 2,000 and 3,000 cycles per second.
Pure tone air conduction audiometric instruments, approved by
nationally recognized authorities in this field, shall be used for measuring
hearing loss. If the losses of hearing average 30 decibels or less in the
3 frequencies, such losses of hearing shall not then constitute any
compensable hearing disability. If the losses of hearing average 85 decibels
or more in the 3 frequencies, then the same shall constitute and be total or 100 percent
compensable hearing loss.
(c) In measuring hearing impairment, the lowest measured
losses in each of the 3 frequencies shall be added together and
divided by 3 to determine the average decibel loss. For every decibel
of loss exceeding 30 decibels an allowance of 1.82% shall be made up to
the maximum of 100 percent which is reached at 85 decibels.
(d) If a hearing loss is established to have existed on July 1, 1975,
by audiometric testing the employer shall not be liable for the previous
loss so established nor shall he be liable for any loss for which compensation
has been paid or awarded.
(e) No consideration shall be given to the question of
whether or not the ability of an employee to understand speech
is improved by the use of a hearing aid.
(f) No claim for loss of hearing due to industrial noise
shall be brought against an employer or allowed unless the employee has been exposed
for a period of time sufficient to cause permanent impairment to
noise levels in excess of the following:
Sound Level DBA
Slow Response Hours Per Day
This subparagraph (f) shall not be applied in cases of hearing loss resulting
from trauma or explosion.
In addition to discharging the foregoing obligations, the employer
shall pay into the Special Fund created under paragraph (f) of Section 7
of the "Workers' Compensation Act", the same amounts and in the same
manner as is provided in the same Act in cases of accidental injuries
arising out of and in the course of the employment.
(Source: P.A. 81-1482.)