If you have been hurt on the job, and the doctor says you could potentially face life-long impairment, you might hope to seek a second opinion. After all, you only get one body and one chance at life. So, why not make sure it’s in the best condition possible? However, the difficult bit about seeking a second opinion in a worker’s injury, is that worker’s comp claims and processes are quite strict in what they cover, and who you see…
Seeking Second Opinion in Worker’s Injury: Am I Allowed?
With normal cases of sickness or injury, you are able to visit your personal doctor. After receiving their diagnoses, you have the option to seek out a second opinion if you wish, especially if the first doctor is suggesting something major. However, when it comes to a worker’s injury, getting that second opinion can be difficult due to the worker’s comp process.
May I seek out a new perspective?
While there are plenty of reasons you may want a second opinion in your worker’s comp case, the question is can you get one? For the most part, you may be able to request another doctor in order to get another opinion. However, while you may request a second opinion from the worker’s comp insurance, there is no guarantee they will approve it. In addition, it will most likely still be within the same network of your employer’s choosing. Therefore, the doctor will likely garner the same opinion. In short, a second opinion may be available, and you can request it but there is no guarantee.
Why seeking a second opinion might be the way to go
In most cases, employers will require that you see a doctor of their choosing. Since they are covering the medical bill through worker’s comp, they hold the right to choose your doctor. However, this means that you will be using a doctor you are unfamiliar with. This can be counterproductive for a number of reasons… For one, you may not feel fully comfortable divulging all information. Therefore, your treatment options and their perception might be different than what you need. For example, you may hesitate to fully describe the events of your accident or the pain you are in. Furthermore, you may feel you cannot fully trust his method of treatment. In some cases, you may feel the doctor is bias since your employer is the one who employed him.
If you choose to seek out a second opinion…
You will likely have to do so on your own, and out of your own pocket, if you wish to see the doctor of your choosing. But, it might be worth doing so for your own safety and healing process. The treatment plan your personal doctor can be supplemental to the worker’s comp assistance, or you can choose to take that route entirely. Ultimately, your healing process is up to you. However, if you choose to see your own doctor, the costs might be a bit higher for you… However, an attorney can typically request a hearing to order that second opinion. Ultimately, the hope of any worker’s comp claim is to reduce disability as much as possible.