From its office in San Mateo, California, DuRard, McKenna & Borg represents injured workers in the San Francisco Bay Area in workers' compensation matters. Workers who are injured on the job are entitled to receive a variety of benefits, including payment for medical treatment and related expenses.
Covered Medical Treatment and Expenses
If you have been injured at work or are suffering from a work-related illness, you are entitled to receive all reasonable and necessary medical treatment to cure and relieve you from the effects of your injury or illness. This means that if you are injured or ill, your employer (or your employer's workers' compensation insurance carrier, also called a claims administrator) will provide for the full payment of your medical, surgical, chiropractic, acupuncture, and hospital treatment expenses, including the costs of medications, wheelchairs, crutches, orthotic devices, prosthetic devices, and other necessary medical and surgical supplies and equipment. In addition, you will be reimbursed for mileage and transportation expenses to your doctor's office, to physical therapy, to the pharmacist, and for similar transportation expenses.
Limitations on Medical Treatment Benefits
There are some important limitations on your medical treatment benefits of which you should be aware. First, California law provides that medical treatment must be "evidence-based," meaning treatments scientifically proven to cure or relive your injury or illness, including how often treatments are needed and the extent and duration of each treatments. These "evidence-based" treatments are set forth in the state's "medical treatment utilization schedule."
Second, California law allows employers to set up a "Medical Provider Network" (MPN) which is a group of doctors and healthcare providers that they have pre-designated to treat their injured workers. The MPN must include a mix of doctors who have expertise in general areas of medicine, as well as doctors who specialize in work-related injuries, and the MPN must be approved by the Division of Workers Compensation of the California Department of Industrial Relations. If your employer has set up a MPN, you must see a doctor in the MPN, unless you have previously designated a personal doctor. You may pre-designate a personal doctor if your employer offers group health insurance, and:
- You provide written notice to your employer that you want your personal doctor to treat you in the event you are injured at work, as well as your doctor' name and address;
- You provide this notice to your employer before your injury occurs;
- The doctor you designate has seen you before and has your medical records; and
- That doctor has agreed to the designation.
There are many additional limitations in the law that can affect your rights to medical treatment benefits. An experienced workers' compensation lawyer can help you navigate the complexities of the workers' compensation system and ensure that you receive all of the medical and other benefits to which you are entitled.
Contact Experienced Workers' Compensation Lawyers
At DuRard, McKenna & Borg, we fight for injured workers. If you have been injured on the job or are suffering from a work-related illness, contact us today to find out how we can help. Our lawyers speak Spanish, Hindi, and Arabic. We offer free initial consultations, as well as take cases on a contingency fee basis, meaning that you pay no legal fees unless we successfully help you recover. Call us today at (650) 425-3278.