Injured at Work: What Are My Rights to Medical Treatment?
When you’re injured on the job in Florida, you are entitled to be compensated for your medical care. Your employer must carry workers’ compensation insurance, which covers the cost of your medical bills. If you have been denied medical care after suffering a work-related injury, or your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance carrier is refusing to pay your medical bills, get in touch with a Florida Workers Compensation Attorney right away.
Some of the main areas we serve can be found below:
Medical Treatment after Your Injury
If your injury is severe enough to require emergent care, your medical treatment will begin when you visit the emergency room. Otherwise, your employer or the workers’ compensation insurance company will choose your doctor. The doctor assigned by your employer or its insurance company becomes your authorized treating doctor. Under Florida Statute Section 440.13, you can ask for a change of doctor one time, however, the employer or insurance company has a right to choose the second doctor who treats you. Your employer or insurer has just five days to find another doctor. If they fail to do so, you’re free to see a doctor of your choice.
If you’re still unhappy with your second doctor, don’t go off on your own and pick a doctor. Contact an experienced Florida workers comp attorney to explore your options. If you see a doctor on your own, and your employer or the insurance company did not authorize the visit, you will most likely have to cover the cost of this treatment out of your own pocket.
Generally, your authorized treating doctor will be a family doctor or primary care physician. If your authorized treating doctor believes you need to see a specialist, he or she will send you to someone who specializes in a particular area of medicine, such as orthopedics. Specialist visits are also covered by workers’ compensation, as long as the visits are authorized.
Your medical payments benefits cover all expenses related to your care. These include doctors’ visits, prescription medication, physical therapy costs, medical devices, surgical procedures, and mileage reimbursement for trips to and from doctors’ appointments. You may also qualify for attendant care if your doctor determines that your injuries warrant having help at home.
How Long Does Florida Workers’ Compensation Cover Medical Treatment?
Under Florida workers’ compensation law, your employer is required to cover all of the medical bills your doctor deems medically necessary. Unfortunately, employers and insurance companies sometimes try to avoid paying medical bills. If this has happened to you, speak to a workers comp lawyer right away.
Workers’ compensation will continue to pay for all reasonable and necessary medical treatment related to your injury, even after your doctor determines that you have reached maximum medical improvement (MMI). Your doctor will make this determination upon deciding you have improved as much as possible and that continued treatment won’t further improve your condition.
Your doctor can decide you have reached MMI, even if your injury has not fully healed. In these situations, when the doctor places you at MMI, he or she will probably also give you a permanent impairment rating and any needed physical restrictions. Once you reach MMI, you must pay a $10 copay for doctors’ office visits.
Read our other posts about workers’ compensation benefits in Florida:
- How Much Are Payments for Lost Wages?
- 5 Workers’ Compensation Mistakes to Avoid
- Where to Find Help with Your Work Injury in Florida
Hurt at Work? Get Help from a Florida Workers Compensation Attorney
When medical bills start piling up after a work-related injury, you need the peace of mind that comes with knowing workers’ compensation will cover them. If you have been denied coverage for any part of your medical treatment, or you believe you have been treated unfairly, get in touch today with a Florida workers’ compensation attorney.