Workplace-related injuries aren’t uncommon in Connecticut. In 2020, there were 33,000 workplace injuries and illnesses reported by private industries. The state and local governments reported 5,900 cases. Being injured on the job can result in financial problems and emotional distress. However, you can recover workers’ compensation benefits to cover the costs.
At some point in the compensation process, you may encounter a workers comp doctor. They play a significant role in your ability to recover benefits. Here’s what you should know about CT workers’ comp doctors.
Workers Comp Doctors Explained
Workers comp doctors are also referred to as authorized treating physicians. They are medical professionals who specialize in treating employees injured on the job. The employer or their insurance company typically chooses the doctors. If you get injured at work in CT, your employer must ensure you receive prompt medical care.
They can send you to a designated medical provider, if they have one, for the initial medical care. You must accept such medical treatment. Your employer or their insurance provider may also have a medical care plan. In CT, you must also obtain ongoing medical treatment from a doctor listed in the care plan.
Understanding What Happens at an Independent Medical Exam
A CT workers comp doctor may conduct an independent medical examination (IME). The insurance company usually chooses the doctor who performs the IME. You, the patient, may have little say in the matter.
The purpose of an IME is to provide the insurer with an opinion on your injuries and treatment needs. The insurance carrier can use the results of the IME to make a decision about your claim.
For example, the insurer may use the IME to decide whether to approve or deny benefits. They can also use it to determine the appropriate level of benefits. The results of an IME may not always be favorable to the patient.
Exaggerating Your Symptoms During an Examination by a Workers Comp Doctor
Exaggerating your workplace injury symptoms during an IME by a CT workers comp doctor isn’t a good idea. Doing so could harm your credibility and your ability to obtain benefits. So, be honest about your symptoms. Also, offer accurate details regarding your medical history.
A workers comp doctor performing an IME can tell if you exaggerate your symptoms. The doctor may ask you specific questions about your symptoms. They will then compare your responses to the results of diagnostic tests. The doctor might also observe your physical reactions to assess if you’re being honest.
Lying to a Workers Comp Doctor
Just like exaggerating, lying won’t help your case. The CT worker comp doctor may be able to tell you’re lying and will take note of it. That could harm your credibility and adversely affect your case.
Ensure you give an accurate description of your symptoms. Don’t create symptoms that don’t exist. Being accurate doesn’t mean you should understate your symptoms, either. Simply be honest about any symptoms and prior conditions.
Disagreeing With the Workers Comp Doctor
The workers comp doctor may not have your best interests at heart. Instead, they might favor the insurance provider. So, the doctor may rule that you don’t need certain procedures or therapy. If things like those happen, you can disagree with the opinion of a CT workers comp doctor.
The best course of action if you disagree with the doctor is to get the help of a workers’ compensation lawyer. An attorney can advise you on the options available for challenging the doctor’s opinion. A lawyer can also help you file the necessary paperwork in a formal objection. In addition, they can gather evidence to help you get justice.
Benefits You May Recover After Examination by a Workers Comp Doctor
After an examination by a workers’ comp doctor, an insurer may accept your claim. If that happens, you may receive various benefits depending on your situation. One of them is medical treatment. This covers the cost of hospital stays, surgeries, rehabilitation, and more.
You may also receive wage replacement benefits. It compensates you for your lost income if you miss work due to your injuries. If a worker’s injuries result in death, their family may be eligible for death benefits. They help cover funeral and burial expenses. The benefits also provide financial support to the surviving family members.
A Lawyer Can Answer All Your Questions
Understanding the role of a CT workers comp doctor in your claim is essential. With the right information, you’ll be ready to face what’s ahead. If you have additional queries, don’t worry. A lawyer can answer all your questions about a workers comp doctor.
Get Help from Brandon J. Broderick, CT Workers Compensation Lawyers
At Brandon J. Broderick, Attorney at Law, we are dedicated to assisting clients throughout Connecticut with their workers’ compensation cases. We have years of experience and the extensive resources you need to secure a fair case result. Filing a workers compensation claim does not mean you will be compensated fairly. Contact us today for a free consultation.