Health

Changing Your Workers’ Comp Doctor: Is It Possible in Virginia Beach?

Workers’ compensation can cover your medical bills if you have been injured on the job. But due to the complex regulatory structure, it can be challenging to file a workers’ comp claim and get the benefits you are entitled to. That is why you need a Virginia Beach injured at work lawyer to represent you when pursuing benefits. 

Typically, there are requirements you must comply with when filing a workers’ comp claim. For instance, you must pick from a list of medical providers that your employer and their insurer provide. If you prefer to visit a different doctor, you may not get the benefits you seek. If you have a workers’ comp case and are considering switching to a different physician, the following are some of the things you should consider:

You Can Change Your Doctor If You are Not Happy with the First

 If you are not seeing positive results from the medical treatment you are getting from your employer’s chosen doctor, you can get a second opinion. Under Virginia law, this is not prohibited.
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However, the switching process is not regulated. 

Steps to Take If You Wanto Change Your Doctor

You must speak with your employer and discuss your sentiments. If you want to see a doctor who is not part of your employer’s list of preferred medical providers, here’s what you should do:

  • Check what your current physician thinks. Ensure your current doctor can advocate for your medical needs, particularly when the insurer denies your right to get adequate medical treatment. Your current doctor must give you specific and direct referrals.
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  • Ask permission from the insurer. Often, the insurer will deny a request to change physicians. But they won’t be able to do so if your current doctor is recommending it or not coordinating with the insurance adjuster. Also, the insurance company cannot deny your request if you can get an award order for temporary total disability but your current doctor is not available to give the necessary treatment. 
  • File a motion. If you have exhausted all options, you can file a motion with the Virginia Workers’ Comp Commission to request a change of doctors.

Can a Second Opinion Be Denied?

You must justify your motion to change doctors before the Commission will grant your request. You should show proof that you are getting inadequate treatment, that you must see a specialist to get treatment, and that your current physician abandoned your care. When you fight for your right to see another doctor, you need an attorney who understands the law and has dealt with several workers’ comp insurance companies in Virginia Beach.

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