If you are ever hurt on the job, it’s critical that you seek proper medical treatment in a timely manner. It’s not a good idea to put off necessary medical treatment, or worse, not get treated at all.
Some workers are hesitant about seeking medical treatment or filing a workers’ compensation claim, however, in New York, almost all workers are protected by workers’ compensation.
IF YOU ARE INJURED ON THE JOB
If you are injured at work, you should obtain first aid or other necessary medical treatment as soon as possible. However, you cannot see just any doctor. The treating physician must be authorized by the Workers’ Compensation Board, with the exception of emergency situations.
If you have an emergency and need an ambulance or must visit an emergency department, you should seek the medical treatment that you need.
If your employer is participating in a Preferred Provider Organization (PPO) or an Alternate Dispute Resolution (ADR) program, you may be required to receive your medical treatment from a participating healthcare provider.
WHAT IF I NEED PRESCRIPTIONS OR TESTS?
If you need diagnostic tests or prescription medications, your employer or their workers’ compensation carrier may require that you get your tests done through a diagnostic network, or that you obtain your medication from a network of pharmacies, or from designated pharmacies that they have contracted with.
If you must go through specific diagnostic networks or pharmacies, then it is required that you receive written notice, explaining that you are required to utilize specific diagnostic networks or designated pharmacies.
WILL I HAVE TO PAY ANY UPFRONT FEES?
You shouldn’t have to pay any upfront fees. Providing that your workers’ compensation case is not disputed, the cost of all necessary medical treatment and medications should by paid for by your employer or their insurance carrier.
Your healthcare providers may request that you sign a form A-9, which notifies the injured worker that he or she may be responsible for their medical bills if their claim is denied.
NOTIFYING YOUR EMPLOYER
If you were injured on the job, be sure to notify your supervisor about the injury and how it occurred as soon as possible. Injured employees who fail to inform their employers in writing within 30 days of the accident may lose their right to workers’ compensation benefits.
In the case of an occupational disease, the worker must provide notice within two years of becoming disabled, or within two years of learning that the disease was work-related, whichever is later.
Contact a New York City workers’ compensation lawyer from Katz, Leidman, Freund & Herman to discuss your case for free!