A: You should never permit your nurse case manager to switch your treating physician without your consent. This comes close to violating the workers’ comp rules.
Sometimes, a nurse case manager will try to switch your physician when the physician’s medical opinion of your condition is inconvenient for the insurance adjuster, particularly with your work restrictions and your capacity to work.
This “doctor shopping” is an outright abuse of the system.
In some cases, the nurse case manager may tell you that the doctor you’ve selected isn’t available for the next month but you could see another doctor this week. Insurance companies have sent injured workers to one of a few doctors who regularly give opinions that clear the worker for returning to work with minimal or no restrictions.
These unscrupulous physicians are paid handsomely for their compliance with the insurance companies, which will go to extreme lengths to get injured workers into the offices of these paid-off doctors. This practice is not only unfortunate but is also outright wrong. Sadly, however, many injured workers are taken advantage of because they don’t know what their rights are or they don’t know how to protect those rights.
It is vital to the integrity of your case that you speak with us since we have handled a substantial volume of work injury cases and are well-acquainted with the intricacies of workers’ compensation rules.
About the Author: Michele Lewane
The Injured Workers Law Firm is a Richmond, Virginia based firm solely focused on serving clients with workers' compensation claims in Virginia. If you have questions about your benefits or if you would like more information on the Virginia workers’ compensation system, order our book, “The Ultimate Guide to Workers’ Compensation in Virginia” , or call our office today (804) 755-7755.