Beware of the Workers’ Comp Doctor
It is important for an injured worker selecting a physician who knows the workers’ compensation system and who is independent from workers’ comp insurance carriers’ control.
While most people have a general distrust of lawyers (the old adage generally rings true — everyone hates an lawyers until they need one), physicians who are considered “workers’ comp doctors” are the real people an injured worker should distrust.
The standard prescription of a Workers’ Comp Doctor
Here is the typical scenario we see day in and day out:
- Injured worker suffers an injury at work;
- The injured worker is sent to an outpatient clinic picked by the employer;
- The injured worker is provided a drug test and simple x-rays (and some get no diagnostics whatsoever);
- The injured worker is diagnosed by outpatient doctor (sometimes a nurse) as having sustained a sprain/strain, provided anti-inflammatories and/or muscle relaxers, and advised to return to work 2-3 days later;
- The injured worker finds it outrageous that he/she could return to work after the expiration of 2-3 days and returns to the outpatient clinic;
- The outpatient clinic physician/nurse reluctantly prescribes physical therapy to the injured worker and, quite often, physical therapy causes injured worker’s condition to deteriorate; and
- Finally, the injured worker is provided an MRI/CT-scan/EMG, and it is discovered for the very first time that injured worker has an injury that will require surgery.
The standard prescription delays treatment
The process outlined above often takes several months to complete. Hiring an attorney who is familiar with “the system” can streamline your treatment.
Without receiving the proper treatment, injured workers can really place themselves behind the 8-ball. Injured workers following the “standard prescription” can experience a build-up of scar tissue and have a worse end result than those who get the necessary treatment more quickly.
You can stop this by picking an independent physician
Remember this…you have the right to select your own physician. Not only that, you have the right to change that physician one time as a matter of right during the life of your claim.
DO NOT let your workers’ comp insurance carrier or adjuster advise you as to which doctor they want you to see. You tell them who you want to see. Take control of your treatment at the beginning of your claim and, if you get any pushback whatsoever, call us!
We will get you to a physician that does not favor your employer or workers’ comp insurance carriers. We will get you an appointment with a specialist who cares about you. You have rights; allow us to ensure they are exercised to your advantage.