California Worker's Compensation - Help For Injured California Workers

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  1. #11
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Calif
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    18,045

    Default Re: Can My Doctors Pa Treat Me

    AME said in report this was unrelated to my work injuries and a result from the operation I had back in 1997.
    Treatment will not be covered under WC. If you dispute that, you need supporting medical evidence, and go to court.
    I could not get Med-CAL at that time due to I was getting some child support and workmans comp. Sad.......
    Whether you qualify for MediCal or not is not a WC issue.

  2. #12
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant

    Just an update for anyone else who has had issues with PA's or other docs in the office treating you.

    I spoke to the main Doc I see about my last appt with the PA and the way I was treated/spoke to and he marked my file to make it so that I only am to be scheduled with him. This may or may not be something your doc will do but if you feel uncomfortable or upset about something that has occurred make sure to mention it.


  3. #13
    Join Date
    Jul 2008
    Location
    California
    Posts
    1,863

    Default Re: Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant

    Quote Quoting PainandSmiles View Post
    Just an update for anyone else who has had issues with PA's or other docs in the office treating you.

    I spoke to the main Doc I see about my last appt with the PA and the way I was treated/spoke to and he marked my file to make it so that I only am to be scheduled with him. This may or may not be something your doc will do but if you feel uncomfortable or upset about something that has occurred make sure to mention it.

    For all injured workers who have the question...Are you able to request to be seen by your primary treating physician, and not a PA...the answer is yes.

    When you check in, tell the person at the front desk you need to be seen by your primary treating doctor. You can also call before hand, to make sure your doctor is in. Some doctor's office workers may be upset with your request, who cares. You have every right to request to be seen by your treating doctor whenever you want, especially if your attorney needs clarification on a diagnosis or report as mentioned above.

    I would not demand to be seen by the primary treating doctor, if you are stable, and just need medication refills. PA's are there for those patients, and to help with the case load. If your condition has gotten worse for example, you should request to be seen by the doctor (IMO).

    Be your own patient advocate, and speak up when you want to be seen by your primary treating doctor, and not the PA. You have every right to make this request.
    Last edited by kelly38; 04-30-2012 at 01:00 PM.

  4. #14
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Charlotte, NC
    Posts
    2,850

    Default Re: Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant

    The PAs are usually very competent and they are closely supervised by the doctor. I had a client a few years ago who was infected with Lyme disease while unloading a truck and it was a PA at an urgent care, rather than a highly respected infectious disease doctor at the big local hospital, who correctly diagnosed and treated him. The doc was sending him for AIDS tests. The doc just missed the boat on it for some reason. The PA saved the guy's health by starting the correct antibiotic.
    The North Carolina Court of Appeals has held that "In contested Workers' Compensation cases today, access to competent legal counsel is a virtual necessity." Church v. Baxter Travenol Labs, Inc., and American Motorists Insurance Company, 104 N.C. App. 411, 416 (1991).

    Bob Bollinger, Attorney at Law

  5. #15
    Join Date
    Sep 2011
    Posts
    68

    Default Re: Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant

    I know that, complwyr. In my regular healthcare I see them quite a bit. This question wouldn't have been asked if she had been one of those types.

  6. #16
    Join Date
    Feb 2007
    Location
    Calif
    Posts
    18,045

    Default Re: Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant

    Here is a definitive, legal answer to your question... Can an Injured Worker See a Doctor Instead of a Physician's Assistant
    The Role of Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners
    in the Workers’ Compensation System




    The Division of Workers’ Compensation has received an increasing number of inquiries concerning whether the use of Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners is permissible in workers’ compensation cases. The Division of Workers’ Compensation believes that Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners play a critical and fully authorized role in assuring that injured workers have timely access to high quality and cost effective medical treatment.

    It is clear that no provision of the Labor Code prevents Physician Assistants or Nurse Practitioners, acting within the scope of their licensure, and under the appropriate degree of physician supervision, from providing medical treatment to injured workers.1 To the contrary, Labor Code Section 5307.1 provides, in pertinent part, that:

    The administrative director shall include services provided by physical therapists, physician assistants, and nurse practitioners in the official (medical) fee schedule…. (Emphasis added.)
    The Division believes that this provision clearly reflects the Legislature’s recognition that Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners are necessary and fully authorized providers of medical care in the workers’ compensation system.

    The definition of "physician" in Labor Code Section 3209.3 expands the scope of the term "physician" to include additional medical practitioners such as acupuncturists, psychologists, and chiropractors who are not otherwise deemed "physicians" under the licensing laws covering doctors of medicine. This section does not bar Physician Assistants or Nurse Practitioners acting within the scope of their respective practices and under the appropriate physician supervision from providing treatment in workers' compensation cases.

    The scope of practice for Nurse Practitioners is defined in Business and Professions Code Sections 2834 * 2837, and the regulations in the California Code of Regulations. Provisions for supervision of Nurse Practitioners are required to be set forth in the standardized procedure guidelines as provided for in Business and Professions Code Sections 2725 and 2836.1 and Title 16, California Code of Regulations, Section 1474.

    The scope of practice and supervision requirements for Physician Assistants are contained in Business and Professions Code Sections 3500 - 3546, and Title 16, California Code of Regulations, Section 1399.540 through 1399.571.

    While Physician Assistants and Nurse Practitioners may treat injured workers, they may not determine or report on an injured workers’ entitlement to benefits, including temporary disability. With respect to determining and reporting on an injured worker’s entitlement to compensation benefits, Labor Code Section 4061.5 provides that:

    The treating physician primarily responsible for managing the care of the injured worker or the physician designated by that treating physician shall, in accordance with rules promulgated by the administrative director, render opinions on all medical issues necessary to determine eligibility for compensation.
    Title 8, Cal. Code of Regulations Section 9785, also provides that:

    (c) The primary treating physician, or a physician designated by the primary treating physician, shall make reports to the claims administrator as required in this section.
    (d) The primary treating physician shall render opinions on all medical issues necessary to determine the employee's eligibility for compensation in the manner prescribed in subsections (e) ,2 (f)3 and (g)4 of this section.

    Under these Labor Code and regulatory sections, a "physician" is obligated to make and report on any medical decision that initiates, terminates or materially changes the injured worker’s entitlement to any compensation as that term is defined in Labor Code Section 32075. Delegating the performance of these duties to a non-physician violates the obligations of a treating physician under both the Labor Code and Section 9785.

    http://www.dir.ca.gov/dwc/dwc_newsli...ine_00-01.html

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