When you get hurt on the job, you may be told that you can see any doctor that you want. Be cautious about who you choose.
Why? The wrong doctor could send you back to work before you should, and you could suffer further complications of your injury as a result. The decision to send you back could hurt your workers’ compensation case as well.
You have a right to see your own doctor
You do have the right to see a doctor who you trust, such as your family doctor. However, you should think about if that doctor is the right person for the job after your injury. It may be more beneficial to see a specialist who works with patients with shoulder injuries if you’ve hurt yours, for example, or you may want to talk to someone who specializes in chemical exposure if you’ve suffered from that on the job.
By law, you have the right to:
- Be reimbursed for the care you receive
- Seek workers’ compensation for your time out of work
- See a specialist or doctor of your choice
If anyone tries to suggest that you have to see one specific doctor or go to a specific facility that they take you to, they’re not being truthful. It’s your right to select someone to help with your medical care based on the preferences you have.
How do you choose the right doctor?
To choose a doctor to work with, consider looking for someone who:
- Treats you with respect
- Listens to your concerns and opinions
- Explains things in a way that you understand
- Encourages you to ask questions about your health or care
You should also ask for recommendations from those you know.
When you reach out to the doctor you’ve selected to help you, ask if they’re taking new patients and if they work on workers’ compensation cases. You should have a doctor who understands what’s at stake for you, so that they take your health care seriously and help you detail out exactly how serious your injuries are for the purpose of your workers’ compensation case.