Ohio Workers’ Comp: Changing the Treating Doctor

Ohio workers’ comp requires you to see a doctor for treatment. You should maintain a good relationship with your doctor during recovery from a workplace injury. As well as providing you with essential medical care, your doctor will refer you to specialists, define your limitations at work, and decide if you are permanently disabled. Insurance companies typically deny Ohio workers’ comp benefits when the attending physician is not supportive of the claim.

You may be able to change doctors if you are unsatisfied with your care, but this depends on the workers’ compensation laws of your state. Make sure you understand the worker’s compensation laws in your state before making a change in your physician. You may be denied any reimbursement for medical bills by your insurance adjuster in the case where your medical specialist discourages your workers’ comp claim.

According to the U.S. Bureau of Labor Statistics, there were over 91,000 nonfatal work-related injuries and illnesses among private-sector employers in Ohio in 2019. The incidence rate was 2.4 cases per 100 full-time equivalent employees, the bureau said.

Who Chooses My Doctor for a Workplace Injury?

People with emergencies can seek treatment from any doctor or hospital as long as they follow their state’s workers’ comp rules. However, you will be required to comply with the Ohio workers’ comp laws in case of non-emergency medical treatment.

The doctor who provides your continuing medical care is selected by your employer or their insurance company in most states. However, in others districts, you are entitled to shortlist your doctor entirely by yourself. Some states have more complex rules, such as requiring you to select a doctor from a network of doctors approved by your employer.

Can I Change My Workplace Accident Doctor?

Your occupational health physician may sometimes appear to be more vested in the financial success of your employer than in your full recovery. Depending on the insurance that you have, you may be able to switch doctors if you don’t feel your condition has improved or if you are unhappy with your doctor’s care.

The compensation system for workers varies from state to state, but you generally have the option of changing doctors at least once. In some states, changing your health care provider may not be allowed due to other restrictions.

  • The Insurance Company Chooses a New Doctor:

The insurance company may be able to verify all medical care in a worker’s compensation case in some states, like Florida, New Jersey, North Carolina, and Virginia. In these states, you may request a new doctor, but the carrier is responsible for choosing your new physician. The insurance company can usually be appealed to the Workers’ Compensation agency in your state.

However, you may consider retaining a qualified workers’ compensation lawyer for assistance as appealing medical treatment is a complex procedure.

  • Observe The Following Waiting Period:

The waiting period varies by state (from one appointment to 90 days) but some states, like Pennsylvania and Michigan, do allow workers to change their physician after a waiting period. After the waiting period, you can see whichever doctor you want. Until you notify your insurance company of a change in doctor, you may be charged for services received before notification. Otherwise, you might be charged for services received before notification.

  • Number of Changes to Be Made:

In Illinois, you can change your doctor twice without your insurance company’s permission. However, in another group of states, you are allowed to change your doctor more than twice.

Ohio allows one doctor change (after the second change, you will need a court order or insurance company approval). In the event that you are no longer receiving automatic changes and still are not satisfied with how you are being treated, a workers’ compensation attorney can provide you with assistance to request a new treatment plan.

  • Licensed Medical Providers:

In some states, such as New York and Washington, workers are free to choose their physicians, but they must get their injuries treated by state-licensed providers. There are usually online lists of licensed physicians in these states, so you can change your doctor but must see a licensed provider. Your insurance company can very conveniently refute all your complaints if you seek medical assistance from an unauthorized doctor.

Contact Us for Ohio Workers’ Comp:

An Ohio workers’ comp lawyer can recommend a doctor if you need to choose from among your employer’s network of doctors. If you need help selecting a doctor, you can consult a workers’ compensation lawyer for assistance. Lawyers who specialize in workers’ compensation are often familiar with occupational doctors and can recommend those who are fair and open-minded.