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Can you choose your own doctor for workers’ comp treatment?

On Behalf of | Jul 2, 2020 | Workers' Compensation

Workers who get hurt while on the job in Connecticut have to comply with a number of rules in order to get the workers’ compensation benefits they deserve. They will have to make a timely report to their employer and will need to seek medical evaluation as soon as possible. They will have to submit paperwork as part of the claims process and then comply with the treatment recommended by the physician overseeing their treatment.

With all of those obligations, it can seem like the system is stacked against workers in Connecticut when they get hurt on the job. Workers may find themselves wondering whether they even have the right to pick their own doctor or if they will be at the mercy of a physician selected by their employer or the workers’ compensation insurance provider.

Your initial visit must be with a specific professional

In order to receive medical or disability benefits through Connecticut workers’ compensation insurance, your initial medical evaluation will need to take place with a provider within the state’s workers’ compensation network.

That requirement precludes you from picking your own physician in most cases unless they are an approved initial treatment provider. However, once you have an approved claim and the state has validated your injuries or condition, you do have the right to select your own physician or a doctor of your choice for ongoing care and treatment, provided that they are on the approved list provided by the insurance plan.

The benefits of working with a doctor your trust

Being able to select a medical professional that you trust is important. You will likely feel more confident following a medical treatment plan created by someone you hired rather than someone hired by an insurance provider that would have an interest in minimizing costs rather than maximizing outcome. That trust can help motivate you to follow through with medical recommendations that can help you recover.

Learning more about your rights as an injured worker can make it easier to advocate for yourself when dealing with your employer or navigating the workers’ compensation insurance program. Getting the right treatment in a timely manner can directly impact your recovery and how quickly you can return to work.