How To Get Medical Care After a Work Injury
Written & Edited By: Cecily Johnson, Legal Assistant & Public Relations Assistant Manager
Like all states, California has laws governing how its workers’ compensation program functions. There are many rules and regulations associated with the program about which you may never need to learn. However, when it comes to getting the medical care you require after a work injury, increasing your knowledge is wise.
Are Any Specific Treatments Not Allowed?
According to the Injured Worker Guidebook (www.dir.ca.gov), workers’ compensation pays for” medical care that is “reasonably required to cure or relieve” the injury and its effects. It is hard to access a full list of covered treatments. At the same time, it is also hard to find a list of treatments the system will not pay for. As a rule, workers’ compensation typically covers treatments that are backed or proven by science.
What About Unconventional Treatments?
In brief, no treatments considered unconventional are mentioned in the guidebook. However, if the unconventional treatment cannot be backed or proven by science, then it will not be covered. For example, acupuncture as a form of treatment along with chronic pain relief and post-surgical care can be considered “unconventional”. However, acupuncture has substantial data to support its aid in chronic pain relief. So, depending on your case, acupuncture could be covered.
Are You Still Confused?
If so, you are not alone. Many injured workers are confused by these seemingly vague medical care guidelines. The guidebook cannot be too specific because each case is unique and may require different types of treatment. On the other hand, it tries to provide information for on-the-job injury victims to use.
Try to learn as much as possible about the worker’s compensation program. You can continue browsing online government publications, or you can turn to an experienced attorney that understands workers’ comp rules and restrictions.
Our Experienced Attorneys Can Help Guide You
Navigating through your complex workers’ compensation claim can be tricky! Especially, when deadlines are critical to your physical and financial wellbeing. However, you don’t have to do it alone. An experienced advocate can help you learn more and guide you in the right direction.
California Department of Industrial Relations . (2016, April). Workers’ Compensation In California: A Guidebook for Injured Workers. https://www.dir.ca.gov/InjuredWorkerGuidebook/InjuredWorkerGuidebook.pdf. Retrieved September 23, 2021.