If a Missouri worker suffers an injury on the job, the first priority in the immediate aftermath of the incident is always to obtain medical treatment. Even if a worker believes that his or her injuries are minor, it is always best to obtain a medical examination because it creates written documentation of the accident, which may come in handy down the line. If an employee files a workers’ compensation claim, there are several issues to keep in mind, especially regarding the choice of a physician.
In this state, as in many others, an employer has a right to choose a medical care provider when a worker has suffered an on-the-job injury. It is also permissible for an insurance agency to act on behalf of an employer to do so. It is understandable that a worker would want to choose where to go for medical treatment, and the law enables personal choice at the worker’s expense.
A worker should seek authorization before choosing where to obtain treatment
A worker in need of medical care following a workplace injury should seek authorization from the employer, or insurance agency acting on behalf of the employer, before choosing a physician at his or her own financial expense. In all aspects of a workers’ compensation claim and medical treatment connected to a workplace injury, it is imperative to keep detailed documentation from the start, including where and how the injury occurred, as well as where the patient is receiving medical care.
Many workers’ comp claims are denied in their initial filings
If a Missouri worker files a workers’ comp claim, and it gets denied, it is not necessarily the end of the road for the claim in question. A worker may file an appeal. In fact, many claims that have been denied in their initial phase are then approved through the appeals process. It is helpful to consult with an experienced workers’ compensation law attorney before submitting a claim or filing an appeal.