Can I Choose My Own Workers’ Compensation Doctor in SC?
Dec. 4, 2021
State law allows your employer or their workers’ compensation insurance company to choose the doctors you can see following your on-the-job injury. Attending appointments with someone you don’t know might seem inconvenient and uncomfortable. However, that’s likely the only way the insurance carrier will cover the costs.
A workplace accident can happen to anyone at any time, disrupting the victim’s life and preventing them from earning their usual wages. Fortunately, workers’ compensation insurance could pay for treatment for qualifying injuries and illnesses.
Initial Evaluation of Your Medical Condition
You must report the injury to your employer and go to a doctor immediately following the accident. You should ask your employer or the insurance company’s representative which medical providers you’re allowed to see. They have the right to choose which healthcare provider you see for your treatment.
You are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits if you seek initial medical care in a hospital emergency room. Inform the doctor that you’re there for a workplace injury, so they know to document that in their notes.
If you decide to go to your primary care physician or another healthcare professional without asking your employer’s permission, their insurance company could deny you coverage for that visit.
Ongoing Treatment for An Occupational
Injury or Illness
If you require ongoing medical treatment for your work-related injury or illness, your employer or their insurance provider can also decide which doctors will treat you during the recovery process.
Your employer can choose specific medical providers or ask you to choose from a list of approved doctors. You will only receive benefits for medical expenses if you seek treatment from someone they approve. If you decide to seek treatment from a doctor who is not on the approved list, you will likely have to turn to your own health insurance company or pay for the treatment out of pocket.
Switching to Another Doctor
It is not uncommon for an injured worker to dislike the company-approved doctor or specialist they were required to see. If you don’t like your doctor, you can switch to someone else, although you must ask permission first.
You can speak with your employer’s insurance company to request a different treating physician. You can also request a hearing with the South Carolina Workers’ Compensation Commission to explain why you want another doctor. If they approve your request, you can begin seeing another physician from the approved list.
Contact an Experienced Workers’
At Powers Law, LLC, we are committed to helping injured workers in South Carolina get the treatment they deserve. You deserve benefits after an on-the-job injury, so that you can afford your medical treatment and other incurred costs while you’re unable to earn your usual income.
Our South Carolina workers’ compensation lawyers understand the responsibility we owe our clients, and are prepared to help you file a claim, receive necessary healthcare, communicate with the insurance company, and gather the necessary evidence to prove you were hurt in a workplace accident. We can take as much of this burden off you as possible, so you can focus all of your time and effort on healing.
At Powers Law, LLC, we believe in helping people get back on their feet after a debilitating injury or illness. Pursuing the benefit payments you deserve can be a challenge if you don’t have a dedicated attorney by your side to provide the help and guidance you need. You can depend on us to fight for your rights and recover the benefits you’re owed so you can afford your medical bills and other expenses.
If you sustained a workplace injury or illness and want to learn about your options for seeking medical treatment through your employer’s workers’ compensation insurer, contact us right now for a free consultation.