Post Date: September 9th, 2008
As a St. Louis Workers’ Compensation attorney, a growing trend that I see is the use of nurse case managers. Workers’ Compensation insurance companies are now hiring nurses to follow the care of injured employees. In theory, this does not sound like a bad thing, and it should be much better than an adjuster who has never received medical training being the one solely responsible for reviewing the employee’s treatment. However, what I am often beginning to see now is that the hired nurse case manager is nothing more than an assassin hired by the insurance company. They often sabotage the workers’ at the doctor’s office, and even try to take inappropriate statements from injured workers. Increasingly, they are speaking with the doctors directly. I believe that this in complete violation of every patient’s HIPPA privacy rights. Yet, not only are they often speaking with the doctors, they are also controlling care by telling the doctors what they are and are not allowed to do. I have even had doctors tell my clients that, regardless of their condition, they would not be allowed to treat them past a certain date because the nurse case manager has said so.
Generally, when I am approached with a new Workers’ Compensation case, I will send a letter to the adjuster telling them that no case manger is allowed to contact my client or their medical providers. Sometimes this does the trick and sometimes it does not. I would love to see a crack down on the insurance companies and their case managers, but until we have a legislature that cares about the rights of injured individuals, I do not see much hope in sight.
If you have been hurt at work and feel that you are being abused by the insurance company or their case managers, and would like to speak with a St. Louis Workers’ Compensation attorney, contact Josh Myers. There is never any hourly fee and all case consultations are free.
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