We are being advised by an increasing number of our client’s that the workers’ compensation insurer, rehabilitation provider, employer or an employer representative are attending all their medical appointments.
Whether you are attending a doctor nominated and funded by your employer or your family doctor you have the right to attend the doctor on your own. The practice of workers’ compensation insurers, rehabilitation providers, employer’s or employer representatives attending appointments with workers after they have sustained a work place injury is unacceptable.
An appointment with a doctor is private and confidential. You and your doctor should not feel pressured to allow anyone into the consultation room. You should make it clear to the doctor that you do not consent to anyone being present at the medical appointment.
If the workers’ compensation insurer, rehabilitation provider, employer or an employer representative attempts to enter the doctor’s consultation room you should insist that they leave. The workers’ compensation progress medical certificates provide sufficient information regarding your injuries and capacity for work to enable the workers’ compensation insurer and employer to manage a safe return to work. If the workers’ compensation progress medical certificate does not provide enough information then the workers’ compensation insurer can always write to the doctor for further information.
If the workers’ compensation insurer, rehabilitation provider or employer want to attend a doctor’s appointment with you then you should tell them to arrange a case conference with the doctor. We recommend that you attend the doctor prior to the case conference if you feel the case conference may be used to influence the doctor.
Workcover WA have stated that a successful case conference will:
Remember a case conference is about you, the injured worker. Do not allow whoever attends the case conference to take control. You have the right to participate and comment in any decisions that affect you.
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If you are concerned about who is attending your medical appointments contact Perth City Legal on 9486 8088 to speak to one of our lawyers.
You may also like to read some of our other articles, on common Workers’ Compensation issues in Perth here.