Changing Doctors in Your Workers’ Compensation Case

changing doctors work

Changing Doctors in Your Workers’ Compensation Case

When you’re recovering from a work injury, it is important to have a good relationship with your treating doctor.

 

Your doctor will not only provide important medical treatment but will also refer you to specialists, set your work restrictions, and decide whether you have a permanent disability. If your treating doctor does not support your workers’ comp claim, the insurance company will typically deny benefits.

If you are unhappy with your treating doctor, you may be able to change physicians. Make sure you understand the rules and procedures in your state before changing doctors. If you fail to follow the correct process, the insurance company may refuse to pay your medical bills.

 

Who Chooses My Initial Workers’ Comp Doctor?

In an emergency, you have the right to seek treatment from any doctor or hospital. However, for non-emergency treatment, you will need to follow your state’s workers’ compensation rules. In many states, your employer or its insurance company has the right to select the treating doctor who will provide your ongoing medical care. In other states, you can pick your own doctor from the very beginning. And, in still other states, the rules are more complicated—for example, you might need to select a doctor from an approved panel or network from your employer. 

 

Can I Switch Workers’ Compensation Doctors?

Sometimes, you may feel that your occupational doctor is more concerned about your employer’s financial well being than your full recovery. If your condition is not improving or you are dissatisfied with the doctor’s medical care, you may be able to change doctors. Every state’s workers’ comp system is different. In most states, you can change doctors at least once. However, depending on where you live, there may be other limitations on your ability to change medical providers.

 

Insurance Company Selects the New Doctor

Some states allow the insurance company to control all medical treatment in a workers’ comp case. In these states—such as Florida, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Virginia—you may ask for a new doctor, but the insurance company will typically select the new doctor for you. If the insurance company denies your request, you can usually appeal the decision to your state’s workers’ compensation agency. However, appeals regarding medical treatment can be tricky, so you may want to consider hiring an experienced workers’ comp lawyer for help.

 

Mandatory Waiting Period

Other states, including Pennsylvania and Michigan, allow workers to switch physicians after a waiting period. The length of the waiting period varies from state to state (ranging from one appointment to 90 days). However, after that time period, you may treat with a doctor of your own choosing. You should not start treating with a new doctor until you give the insurance company adequate notice. Otherwise, you may be billed for treatment received before you gave notice.

 

Limit on Number of Changes

Another group of states allows you to change physicians but limits the number of times you can do so. For example, in Illinois, you can change doctors twice without the insurance company’s permission. (After your second change, you must get either the insurance company’s approval or a court order before switching doctors.) Georgia allows a one-time change of physician. If you’ve used up your automatic changes and are still unhappy with your treatment, a workers’ compensation lawyer can help you request approval for an additional charge.

 

Authorized Medical Providers

Some states, including New York and Washington, allow workers to choose their treating doctors. However, they have a directory of medical providers who are authorized by the state to treat injured workers. If you treat with an unauthorized doctor, the insurance company may not pay the doctor’s bills. These states typically have an online directory of authorized doctors. While you may be able to change physicians, you must treat with an authorized provider.

 

What If My Employer Has a Managed Care Organizations or Provider Network?

A managed care organization (MCO) is a network of physicians that treat injured workers. MCO’s are an increasingly popular way to reduce workers’ comp expenses for employers. If your employer provides treatment through an MCO or provider network, you typically may change physicians, but your new doctor must also be within the network.

 

Can I Get a Second Medical Opinion?

If you’re not able to change doctors, you may still be able to get a second opinion in some states. In general, a second opinion doctor does not provide ongoing treatment. Instead, the doctor will perform a one-time examination, review your medical records, and give recommendations on your treatment, work restrictions, and limitations. The insurance company will consider the second opinion report and findings when assessing your workers’ comp claim. A second opinion can also be used as evidence at a workers’ compensation hearing if your benefits are denied.

Second opinions are usually available when the insurance company has control over your medical care and selects your treating doctor. The process for requesting a second opinion varies from state to state. Typically, if your claim has been denied, the insurance company will not pay for a second opinion. Instead, your workers’ compensation lawyer may send you to an independent medical examination with a doctor of his or her choosing. 

 

Tips on Finding a New Workers’ Comp Doctor

When you choose a new doctor, you should consider a series of factors, including:

  • whether the doctor has experience treating your medical condition
  • how familiar the doctor is with workers’ compensation claims
  • whether the doctor is willing to testify in support of your claim, and
  • whether the doctor is professional and would make a good witness.

It is important that you trust the provider and feel comfortable with his or her treatment recommendations. If you need help finding a doctor, a workers’ compensation lawyer may be able to recommend a physician, especially if you need to select one from your employer’s network. Workers’ comp lawyers are often familiar with occupational doctors and can tell you which ones are likely to be open-minded and fair.

 

Original article: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/changing-doctors-workers-compensation-case.html

 


 

Call 216-342-9199 or fill out the form below to schedule a no-cost to you consultation for any problems or injuries that you may be suffering due to your work related injuries.

Upon completing your initial consultation your care options will be discussed in detail so you can make an informed decision regarding your care.

It is the goal of our office to provide you (the injured worker) with the care and knowledge needed to make responsible decisions regarding your health and wellness.

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workers' compensation

Can You Sue Outside of Workers’ Compensation?

Workers’ compensation insurance may not be your only recourse for a workplace injury.

 

If you’ve been injured in the workplace, you’ve probably been told that the only compensation you can receive will come from your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance. Although this is the general rule, there are many exceptions – situations in which you may be able to sue for damages caused by your injuries.

For example:

  • If you were injured by a defective product, you might be able to bring a products liability action against the manufacturer of the product.
  • If you were injured by a toxic substance, you might be able to bring a toxic tort lawsuit against the manufacturer of that substance.
  • If you were injured because of your employer’s intentional or egregious conduct, you might be able to bring a personal injury lawsuit against your employer.
  • If your employer does not carry workers’ compensation insurance, you might be able to sue your employer in civil court or collect money from a state fund.
  • If a third party caused your injury, you might be able to bring a personal injury lawsuit against that person.

 

Although workers’ compensation can provide money and benefits to an injured worker, temporary disability, and permanent disability payments are usually quite low and don’t compensate the worker for things like pain and suffering. Workers’ compensation also does not provide punitive damages to punish an employer for poor safety controls or dangerous conditions. That’s why it’s important for injured workers to understand their rights to bring a case outside of the workers’ compensation system.

In addition to the lawsuits described in this article, you might obtain additional money from government benefits such as Social Security disability insurance (SSDI or SSI) if your injury is disabling and prevents you from working.

 

If You Were Injured by a Defective Product

When a worker is injured by a machine or piece of equipment that is defective, failed to work properly, or is inherently dangerous, the manufacturer of the machine or equipment can be held responsible for the injury if it knew of the danger and/or didn’t properly warn the business or employees of the danger. In such a situation, the manufacturer would have to compensate the worker for things like medical bills, lost wages, and pain and suffering.

Example:

Bill works in a factory that produces office products. His job is to operate a punch press that punches holes in boxes. One day, when Bill puts his hand into the press to adjust a box, the foot pedal that he uses to stop the press sticks, and the press crushes three of his fingers. His fingers are no longer usable after the accident. Bill can collect workers’ compensation from his employer, and he also has a possible products liability case against the manufacturer of the defective press.

If you have been injured by an unsafe machine or other equipment in your workplace, consider talking to an attorney about your rights. You can also file a complaint with the Department of Labor’s Occupational Health and Safety Administration if there have been unsafe conditions, in addition to filing a workers’ compensation claim. This is a particularly important step to take if your employer is still requiring you or other employees to use the equipment.

 

If You Were Injured by a Toxic Substance

Sometimes the chemicals and other substances that workers use are toxic and cause severe injuries and illnesses. These substances can include such things as asbestos, benzene, chromium compounds, silica, and radium, but any substance that harms you could possibly be the subject of a lawsuit for a “toxic tort.”

Generally speaking, there are two kinds of toxic injuries: acute injuries are apparent immediately, while latent injuries may take years to appear.

Examples of acute injuries include chemical burns and poisonings. Examples of latent injuries include cancers and lung diseases. Because of the time delay, latent injuries tend to be more difficult to prove than acute ones, but these cases are not impossible. Workers have been successful in lawsuits brought years after their exposure to the toxic substance. (In particular, workers who suffer from asbestosis or mesothelioma almost always succeed in lawsuits because the causation between exposure to asbestos and asbestosis and mesothelioma has been proven in many lawsuits).

When a worker is injured by a toxic substance, the worker can usually sue the manufacturer of the toxic substance and any manufacturers of safety equipment that proved to be ineffective in the handling of the toxic substance.
If you have been injured or sickened by a toxic substance, talk to an attorney about your legal rights. Especially if a great deal of time has passed between your exposure and your injury or illness, you will need the assistance of an expert to help you sort out the complicated issues involved. And even if the toxic injury was recent, an attorney can probably get you the best settlement for your injury.

If the toxic substance is continuing to make the workplace unsafe for your or others, consider taking the additional step of filing a complaint with the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA).

 

Originally published: https://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/workplace-injury-lawsuit-sue-30334.html


 

At Eastside Medical Group, we are Ohio BWC Certified to provide work injury care.

Call us today to discuss your work-related injury!

216-342-9199

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independent medical exam

Independent Medical Examination and Workers’ Comp

What is an Independent Medical Examination and How Will It Affect My Workers’ Compensation Case?

If there is a dispute about your medical condition in your workers’ comp case, the insurance company may ask you to undergo an independent medical examination (IME) by a doctor of its choosing.

IME doctors provide reports that carry legal weight and can be used as evidence at your hearing to establish the degree of your permanent disability and how much you should receive in benefits. Because the outcome of these exams can greatly affect your workers’ comp case, it’s important to know the general purpose of these medical exams and how to prepare for them.

 

What Is an Independent Medical Examination?

An independent medical examination (IME) is a medical evaluation that is used to resolve questions about your medical condition, including what treatment is necessary and the degree of your permanent impairment if any. An IME is most often requested by the insurance company when there is a question about what treatment you need or what permanent disability rating you should be given. In some cases, the judge or hearing officer assigned to your case may also order an IME to resolve a disputed issue related to your case.

 

Who Chooses the Doctor for an IME?

An independent medical examination (IME) is supposed to be an objective assessment of your medical condition, including what treatment you need, whether you have a permanent impairment and to what degree, and your ability to work in the future. However, whether your IME is truly objective may depend, in part, on how the IME doctor is selected.

Most often, an IME is requested by the insurance company because it disagrees with your course of treatment or your permanent disability rating, as determined by your treating doctor (the one who regularly treats you for your work-related injury). If this is the case, the IME is usually performed by a doctor selected by the insurance company. These doctors are paid by the insurance companies and often rely on the insurance companies for referrals. As a result, they have an incentive to minimize the scope of your injury to lower your workers’ comp award.

In some states, you may also have the right request a medical examination when you disagree with your treating doctor’s opinions. In this situation, you can usually select the doctor who will perform the examination.

If you have been asked to undergo an IME, you should consider consulting with a workers’ comp attorney. Unless your case is simple or your injuries are minor, you may need the assistance of a lawyer if the insurance company is challenging your treating doctor’s opinions.

 

What Happens During an IME?

Before the examination occurs, your medical records and any other documents relevant to your injuries (such as your injury report or statements you’ve given in your case) will be sent to the IME doctor. The doctor will decide whether to review the documents before or after the examination. 

If there is a hotly contested issue in your case, the insurance company may write a letter to the doctor explaining your injury, summarizing your course of treatment to date, and posing specific questions about your medical condition. These questions are used to frame the issues for the doctor. For example, the doctor may be asked his or her opinion about whether your current symptoms are related to your work accident or whether a surgery recommended by your treating doctor is necessary.

You should ask to review any letter sent to the IME doctor by the insurance company. That way you can correct any factual mistakes and make sure that the questions asked are appropriate in your case. Whenever possible, you should make your request in writing and file a copy with the state agency in which your workers’ comp claim is pending.

During an IME, there is generally no expectation of a normal physician-patient relationship.

This means that anything you tell the doctor is not privileged or protected in any way. Your statements to the doctor could even be used against you at a workers’ comp hearing if your case gets that far. The same goes for observations the doctor makes. 

For example, if the doctor sees you walking normally from your car to the office, but then sees you grimacing with pain and favoring one leg in the office, he or she will make a note of that. You can bet that this inconsistency will show up in the doctor’s report, and the judge or hearing officer will take this into account when assessing your credibility.

During the examination, the doctor will likely start out by asking you about how your injury happened, what your relevant medical history is, and the course of your treatment so far. To prepare, you may want to go over your notes and review the timeline of what happened between your accident and the IME.

You should ask questions about your condition and any potential treatment options that might help. If the IME doctor will be giving you a permanent impairment rating, you should ask how the doctor will calculate the rating. You should also be sure to tell your doctor about any areas of your body that are still in pain and about any activities that you still have difficulty performing. 

Once your physical examination is done, the IME doctor will write a report and send it to all parties. You should request a copy of this report and read it carefully so that you can point out any factual mistakes in your treatment or medical history.

 

How Will the IME Affect My Workers’ Comp Case?

An IME can have a large impact on your case. IME doctors are often viewed as “experts,” and their reports may be given significant weight by workers’ comp judges and hearing officers. Because they aren’t involved in your treatment, they are also seen as more objective, although that’s often not the case. For these reasons, it can be difficult to discredit an IME doctor’s expert opinion.

However, there are some situations where it will be effective to challenge the IME report. 

For example, if the doctor’s opinion is based on incorrect information about your medical history or there is some other factual mistake, you should make that clear right away. You should write a letter to the doctor and the insurance company explaining the factual mistake and supporting it with documentation from your medical records, if possible. You should request that the doctor clarify his or her report through an addendum. In some states, you can also request a second medical examination, performed by a doctor of your own choosing.

If you dispute the statements in the IME report and cannot get the issue informally resolved, and the IME is being used against you to limit or cut off your benefits, you should consult with a workers’ compensation attorney right away.

An attorney can help protect your interests by filing objections, scheduling a deposition to question the doctor, or requesting another examination.

 

As originally posted on Nolo.com


Call 216-342-9199 or fill out the form below to schedule a no-cost to you consultation for any problems or injuries that you may be suffering due to your work related injuries.

Upon completing your initial consultation your care options will be discussed in detail so you can make an informed decision regarding your care.

It is the goal of our office to provide you (the injured worker) with the care and knowledge needed to make responsible decisions regarding your health and wellness.

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medical treatment work injury

Seeking Medical Treatment for a Work-Related Injury

Seeking Medical Treatment for a Work-Related Injury

Find out when, where, and how to get medical treatment in your workers’ comp case.

If you suffered an injury at work or while performing your work duties, it’s important to take the right steps when seeking medical treatment. Getting appropriate medical care is not only important for your health and recovery, but also for maximizing your workers’ compensation benefits and making sure that you’re properly compensated for your injuries.

 

When Should You Seek Treatment?

With any injury, even injuries that seem minor, you should seek treatment right away. This means seeing a doctor immediately after a work-related accident or at the first sign of any symptoms that might be due to your work duties.

Being treated soon after you’ve been injured serves two important purposes. First, early treatment makes it more likely that you’ll recover from your injuries faster. Second, the closer in time to your accident that you receive treatment, the less room it gives your employer (or its insurance company) to argue that your injuries are not work-related.

No matter what, you should resist the urge to “tough it out” or downplay the seriousness of your injuries. This can delay or impede your recovery, and it can affect the scope of treatment authorized by workers’ comp or the amount of benefits you ultimately receive.

 

Where Should You Go to Get Treatment?

If you need immediate medical attention, you should go to the nearest emergency room for treatment. For non-emergency situations, you’ll need to follow your state’s rules on the proper channels for obtaining medical care.

Some states give the employee the right to choose the doctor who will treat you for your injuries (called your “treating doctor” in workers’ comp lingo), while others give the employer that right. Still other states have more complicated rules for selecting a treating doctor.

Although doctors hired by employers (or their insurance companies) are supposed to be objective, they often have close and financially rewarding relationships with the employers that refer them cases. Because of this, it’s in your best interest to receive treatment from a doctor you know and trust.

Whenever possible, you should choose your own treating physician. Make sure to choose a doctor who is both experienced and articulate. Treating physicians are often called upon to provide written reports or even oral testimony, so it’s important that your doctor can clearly and convincingly explain the reasons behind his or her decisions regarding your care.

In any case, you should make sure that you obtain treatment through the correct avenues and from a properly licensed or credentialed doctor. Otherwise, you run the risk that your medical bills will not be covered.

 

What Role Does Your Treating Doctor Play?

The doctor who ends up treating you will play an essential role in your workers’ compensation case. Your treating doctor will make important decisions about your care, including:

  • whether your injuries are work-related
  • the nature and scope of the treatment you receive
  • how much time off from work you need or whether you need light duty
  • when you have reached “maximum medical improvement” (defined below), and
  • the extent to which you have any permanent disability.

These decisions will have a large impact on what treatment you receive and what benefits you are entitled to. For example, if your doctor says you’ve reached maximum medical improvement, this means that your condition has plateaued to the point where further medical treatment isn’t helpful. It also means that you’re no longer entitled to temporary disability benefits.In addition, the degree of permanent disability your doctor believes you have will help dictate

In addition, the degree of permanent disability your doctor believes you have will help dictate the amount of permanent disability benefits you receive. 

 

What Should You Tell Your Doctor?

Even with the advancement of medical technology, doctors still rely on patients to report symptoms, severity of pain, and activities that are difficult or impossible to perform. This is especially true for soft tissue injuries (injuries that don’t involve bones), which often cannot be verified through medical imaging devices such as x-rays.

Because some injuries can be more subjective in nature, it’s especially important for you to communicate with your doctor about what you’re feeling.

In doing so, you should follow these guidelines:

  • Be honest and accurate. Describe your symptoms to your doctor truthfully. Don’t exaggerate, but don’t downplay your symptoms either. An experienced doctor will know when you’re not telling the truth, and you’ll lose credibility.
  • Err on the side of inclusion. Tell your doctor about all of your symptoms, even ones that seem minor or fleeting. Your doctor is the expert, and you should let him or her decide what’s important. Besides, a symptom that seems insignificant now may develop into a serious problem weeks or months down the road.
  • Don’t speculate. If you don’t know the answer to a question your doctor asks, just say so. Never guess about what the cause of your injuries might be, and don’t say that you have fully recovered unless you’re sure that’s the case.

 

Who Pays for Your Medical Bills?

In most states, your employer is required to pay for your medical bills until a decision has been made to accept or deny your claim, at least up to a certain amount.

If your claim is approved, your employer will continue to pay for your medical bills for approved treatment.

If your claim is denied, you can pay for your own bills and seek reimbursement from the workers’ comp insurance company once the denial is overturned. Or, some doctors might agree to treat you on what’s called a “lien basis,” meaning that payment for your bills will come out of any recovery you get through workers’ comp. In the meantime, if your state has a temporary disability insurance program, you may be eligible to apply for these short-term benefits to make up for some of your out-of-pocket costs.

 

Getting Help

Workers’ compensation claims can be difficult to navigate, especially if your employer is fighting any portion of your claim. Getting the help of an experienced workers’ compensation attorney can be invaluable in making sure you’re fully compensated for your loss. 

 

Original Article: http://www.nolo.com/legal-encyclopedia/seeking-medical-treatment-work-related-injury.html

 


Call 216-342-9199 or fill out the form below to schedule a no-cost to you consultation for any problems or injuries that you may be suffering due to your work related injuries.

Upon completing your initial consultation your medical treatment care options will be discussed in detail so you can make an informed decision regarding your care.

It is the goal of our office to provide you (the injured worker) with the medical treatment care and knowledge needed to make responsible decisions regarding your health and wellness.

Eastside Medical Group
216-342-9199
Dr. Jane Hoashi, M.D. and M.P.H.
Dr. Lauchlin McKeigan, DC
Dr. Karen Bodnar, DC
Dr. Jessica Dilley, DC
Dr. Matthew Woodworth, DC
Serving patients in Shaker Heights, Maple Heights, East Cleveland, and surrounding areas

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repetitive stress injuries

Repetitive Stress Injuries in the Workplace

Repetitive Stress Injuries in the Workplace: An Overview for Employees

Find out if you’re at risk for developing an injury caused by repetitive motions at the workplace.

Originally posted on NOLO.com

 

Workplace injuries are often associated with a single, life-altering incident, such as an engine explosion that injures a mechanic, or a slip of a kitchen knife that severs a chef’s finger. But workplace injuries are not always the result of a sudden, isolated event. In fact, most workplace injuries develop over time from minor, repetitive movements that are performed on a frequent basis, better known as repetitive stress injuries. Fortunately, employees can recover for these types of repetitive stress injuries (RSIs) through the workers’ compensation system.

For an RSI to develop, the individual action need not be difficult, physically challenging, or harmful by itself. But when that one motion is repeated several times in a day, and over the course of weeks, months, and years, the combined effect can take a serious toll on a worker’s health. An RSI can leave a worker in considerable pain and unable to perform routine job tasks and simple life functions, such as raising an arm or bending over.

There is no single, precise legal definition of the term repetitive stress injury (RSI). In fact, according to the Occupational Safety and Health Administration (OSHA), the agency responsible for enforcing federal workplace safety laws, there are more than 100 different types of job-induced injuries and illnesses that result from wear and tear on the body. Not surprisingly, RSIs now make up the largest single category of workplace injuries, far more than slips and falls, cuts, or car accidents. In fact, if you are a worker in the United States, you have a one in eight chance of developing an RSI during your lifetime.

 

Who is at Risk for a Repetitive Stress Injuries?

The increased frequency of job-related RSI injuries can be attributed, in large part, to the increased use of computers in the workplace over the past few decades. Businesses, large and small, now use computers for almost everything: communicating with customers, generating bills, preparing reports, conducting research, and performing inventory and data analysis.

The most common type of RSI involves injury to the hands and arms as a result of computer activities. If you spend your day repeating the same keyboarding motions over and over again, at high speeds with little rest, this can apply potentially damaging force to your muscles, joints, and tendons. Or, if you frequently use of a computer mouse or a touch screen, this can cause similar impacts on your body.

Some of the common conditions caused by this type of computer use are carpal tunnel syndrome (pinching of nerves caused by swelling of tissues in the wrist), bursitis (swelling of cushions between bones), and tendonitis (tears in tissue connecting muscles and bones).

However, it isn’t just computer workers who are at risk of developing an RSI. Many physical jobs, such as those in construction or manufacturing, frequently require repeated lifting, reaching, or use of heavy tools. But, the repeated activity doesn’t need to be strenuous to cause an RSI. Even a relatively light hand hammer, when used by a roofer on hundreds of nails each day, can overwork muscles over time and result in an RSI. 

Supermarket cashiers and other retail clerks who work in front of conveyor belts are also at risk. These workers often scan hundreds (or thousands) of items per shift, which need to be quickly lifted, turned, and pulled so that bar codes can easily be scanned. Checkout counters are rarely adjusted to each worker’s height and other specifications, which can contribute to the problem. Even a hand-held scan gun requires workers to make repeated arm, wrist and shoulder movements that could turn into an RSI.

Other occupations with a high potential for RSIs include: assembly line workers, butchers (including meat packing), drivers (including delivery services and passenger transport), stocking shelves (wholesale or retail), musicians, and mechanics. These occupations require workers to sit or stand for prolonged periods, or perform repeated movements of fingers, hands, or arms.

 

Is There Any Way to Prevent RSIs from Occurring?

The good news is that there are simple steps that can minimize the risk to workers, especially when it comes to computer use. A specially designed and adjustable workstation is one of the most effective ways to decrease the risk of developing an RSI. If you spend a large portion of your day in front of a computer, you should ask your employer to adjust the height, angle, and position of your computer screen (to avoid strain on the neck) or provide a keyboard rest (to relieve strain on the hands, arms, and wrists). Even moving the mouse pad a few inches closer to your body can bring significant relief.

In addition to corrected workstations, you should adjust your work habits to include stretching exercises, taking appropriate breaks, and typing with a light touch. If possible, you should also vary the tasks you perform throughout the day, to reduce the impact of repetitive motions. Maintaining correct posture can also go a long way to preventing injury.

For workers who don’t work in an office, many of the same recommendations apply. For example, you should take adequate work breaks, perform stretching exercises, and vary your work tasks, if possible.

 

What to Do When You Suspect a Workplace RSI

It can be hard to detect an RSI in its developing stages. The worker may not notice any symptoms, and it may be too late by the time he or she thinks to take time off or seek medical treatment. Or it may be that a worker notices an increase in pain, a loss of strength, or an onset of numbness, but regards the symptoms as “just part of the job,” or chalks them up to aging. It may even be that the worker simply accepts and endures the discomfort, for fear of losing his or her job.

Whatever the case, it’s important for employees to pay attention to the warning signs of an RSI so that it can be caught early on. Warning signs can include a dull or achy pain in the limbs, tingling or numbness in the fingers or arms, weakness or a loss of coordination, or fatigue. If you experience any of these symptoms, take note of what time of day they usually happen and what activities you just performed. This can help your doctor determine what’s causing the injury and how best to minimize your pain.

If you suspect an RSI, you should notify your employer and make a timely workers’ compensation claim. Every state has its own time limit for doing so, based on the date of injury. Because an RSI involves a cumulative trauma that may have occurred over several months or years, it can be difficult to pinpoint the exact date of injury. To be on the safe side, you should file a claim as soon as possible.

Workers should make claims and seek medical care as soon as there is any measurable job-related pain, loss of motion, flexibility or strength, tingling or numbness, or similar bodily discomfort. After all, taking care of the condition while it is minor is far better than waiting until it causes a great deal of harm. And workers’ compensation laws prohibit employers from firing or disciplining employees for filing claims, so you can rest assured that you won’t be penalized for speaking up about your workplace injury (or if you are, you’ll have legal grounds for holding your employer responsible).

 


At Eastside Medical Group, we are Ohio BWC Certified to provide work injury care.

Call us today to discuss your work-related injury!

216-342-9199

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