Dealing with Doctors: Personal Injury Victims



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Have you or a loved one ever suffered personal injury from an accident?  If so, hopefully you took it upon yourself to seek medical attention right away to get any problems taken care of before they had any chance to worsen.  Some people fail to seek the proper medical attention after suffering from a personal injury, which ends up leading to more problems that otherwise could have been avoided.  In this situation, the top five major mistakes that individuals make when dealing with doctors include:

#1 – Putting off Treatment

The number one worst thing you can possibly do is not seek out medical attention right away.  This is because insurance companies like to see the proof as to why you became injured in order for the correct compensation to follow.  Plus, if you wait any amount of time before you visit a doctor your injuries may worsen, and likely you will be responsible for paying the costs that accrue from any treatment you receive – even though it may not have been your fault.  Whatever you do, seek treatment immediately!

#2 – Concealing the Truth

Never make your injuries worse that what they are or avoid sharing any personal health information with your personal injury doctor, because in order to have the best results from any treatment and for any insurance company compensation for your injuries, you must tell the truth!  If you tell your doctor the truth you will have a better chance that your diagnosis and their medical opinions will be trusted by both the jury and the insurance company.

#3 – Asking the Doctor for Legal Advice

Keep in mind that your personal injury doctor is there to focus solely on any medical problems that you may be suffering from.  You should not try to shift their focus and rely on them to give you advice on something that is completely out of their scope of practice.  Sharing any legal issues with your doctor is unnecessary and will not be beneficial in how well you heal anyway, so it’s best to keep them to yourself.  In addition, if you tell your doctor they are treating an issue that is the main focus of a lawsuit, they may become reluctant to even continue your treatment or share their medical opinions with you.  Please remember that whatever you say to your doctor is no longer confidential the minute you file that personal injury claim.

#4 – Failing to Follow-Up

The moment you claim injuries in a lawsuit, your medical records will be released to the insurance company.  Both the insurance company and jury will get to view these records.  When receiving treatment for an injury you will be expected to attend follow-up appointments with your personal injury doctor until your issues are completely resolved.  However, if you fail to attend any number of follow-up appointments, your records will then indicate you were a “no-show,” which will appear to others that you weren’t exclusively committed to getting better…so why should your case win?  Having this on your medical record will not look good and could cause you to lose your case.  Do your best to follow-up for any medical care that is needed, it will be in your best interest.

#5 – Inaccurate Documentation

If you’re in pain, your insurance company and members of the jury will not believe you just because you say so.  It must be written and placed into your medical record so it can be read and individuals can see just how soon you reported any pain after your injury occurred.  Even though you really may have reported your pain in a timely manner, your personal injury doctor may have neglected to transcribe that into your medical record.  In order to make sure that does not happen, you should write out any pain you are feeling and what activities you are having a difficult time completing due to the pain (climbing stairs, standing for prolonged periods, etc)  prior to your doctor’s appointment so you can see it be physically placed into you record.  In addition, always make copies of what you hand to your doctor for yourself and go ahead and make one for your attorney too…just to be safe!

Ultimately, in order to have your case of any personal injury go smoothly, never put any injury off and make sure to completely follow through with all care in order to achieve the best results for yourself, of both winning your case and resolving any health issues.