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I Don't Like the Doctor They Sent Me To.
What Can I Do?

Law Office of Justin S. Eppler, LLC April 11, 2022

When involved in a workplace accident or suffering a work-related illness, getting adequate medical treatment is important to help you recover fully. Your doctor will provide medical treatment, set work restrictions, recommend lifestyle changes, or refer you to a specialist if necessary. If you don't like the doctor you were referred to or if your health condition isn't improving, you may be eligible to change physicians.

At the Law Office of Justin S. Eppler, LLC, we're dedicated to offering experienced legal guidance and reliable advocacy to employees in their workers’ compensation claims. Our Alaska workers' compensation attorneys can evaluate the surrounding circumstances of your unique situation and explore your options to choose your own preferred physician or caregiver. We're proud to serve clients across Anchorage, Fairbanks, Wasilla, Palmer, and Juneau, Alaska.

Who Chooses the Initial Doctor?

Oftentimes, your employer or workers' compensation insurance provider may have a list of preferred doctors, hospitals, medical facilities, and healthcare providers to offer specific medical care or procedures in your insurance coverage. Hence, if you're injured at work or suffering a work-related illness, your employer or workers' compensation insurer will refer you to a preferred doctor. This will help ensure that all injured workers are provided with a consistently high standard of medical care.

Can I Switch Workers' Comp Doctors?

Yes. If you're unhappy with the physician you were referred to, or if your health condition has not improved, you may be eligible to switch doctors. However, there are certain factors that may affect your ability to change doctors. These include:

  • There may be a mandatory waiting period before you can change doctors.

  • There may be a restriction on the number of times you can switch physicians.

  • You may only be allowed to choose from the list of authorized medical providers.

  • The workers' comp insurance provider may choose the new doctor on your behalf.

  • Your new physician may have to be within your employer's managed care organization (MCO).

An experienced attorney can walk you through the process involved in changing doctors or determine whether you're eligible to get a second opinion.

What About a Second Opinion?

If you are unable to switch doctors, you may still be allowed to get a second opinion. The second opinion physician will help with the following:

  • Perform a one-time examination

  • Evaluate your medical records

  • Provide expert recommendations regarding your medical care, work restrictions, and other limitations

However, the second opinion doctor will be unable to provide continuous or ongoing treatment. Regardless, the workers’ compensation insurance provider will consider the report, findings, and recommendations of the second opinion doctor when evaluating your workers' comp claim.

How Skilled Advocacy Can Help

Establishing a cordial relationship with your doctor can aid your recovery after a workplace injury or illness. In addition to providing medical care, your physician will recommend lifestyle changes, set work restrictions, or refer you to a specialist. In the event that you're unhappy with your occupational doctor, you are within your rights to change medical providers. An experienced workers' compensation attorney can enlighten you about your available options and help you decide the best course of action.

At the Law Office of Justin S. Eppler, LLC, we are committed to providing outstanding legal services and advocating for the best interests of injured workers. As your legal counsel, we will review every detail of your case and determine your eligibility to change physicians. Also, our trusted attorneys can guide you through the process involved in finding a new workers' comp doctor to treat your medical condition and help you make intelligent decisions when choosing a physician.

If you don't like your treating doctor or if your condition hasn't improved, you may be entitled to change physicians. Contact the Law Office of Justin S. Eppler, LLC today to schedule a simple case assessment with skilled workers' compensation attorneys. Our trusted team can offer you the detailed legal counsel and brilliant advocacy you need to navigate crucial decisions when changing treating doctors. We proudly serve clients across Anchorage, Fairbanks, Wasilla, Palmer, and Juneau, Alaska.