As we all do what we can to slow the spread of Coronavirus by wearing masks, limiting travel, and practicing social distancing, we know also that we can’t let our lives come to a grinding halt. This is especially true if you are suffering or recovering from an industrial injury or occupational disease.
Washington State Department of Labor and Industries has several rules and guidelines you must follow
As a claimant, to keep your claim open and progressing and to keep time-loss payments coming in if you are entitled to them, there are several rules and guidelines you must adhere to.
Two of these rules that are infinitely important are:
- Continuing to seek treatment
- Participating in Independent Medical Evaluation
If you’ve been through one or more of these exams, you know why I emphasized the word “independent.”
Telehealth as a potential option for an L&I claim
Given the ongoing effort to stop the spread of Covid-19, telehealth appointments have been given more attention. If you’re at an increased risk of complications from COVID, are symptomatic, or have otherwise been advised to take special precautions with public interaction, telehealth could be an option.
With regard to seeking treatment with your own provider, obviously, the first step is to find out if your doctor or provider offers meetings via phone, internet, Zoom, Skype, etc. If so and you’d like to visit your doctor this way rather than in person, it’s a very good idea to call your claim manager to make sure the guidelines are still currently allowing payment for this type of appointment.
Concerning IME (Independent Medical Exam) appointments, L&I has been setting some exams as telehealth visits. If you have a telehealth IME scheduled, make sure you record the exam if you have the ability to do so. This way you have a record of what was actually covered by the IME provider, what tests they asked you to complete, and what they reviewed with you.
Injured at work? Carlisle & Byers are here to help you with your worker’s compensation claim.
If you are having difficulty with your claim because of the pandemic, please contact Carlisle & Byers for a free, virtual consultation. Rich and Chris are here to help injured workers in Spokane, Yakima, Wenatchee, Tri-Cities, and all over eastern Washington.