Last April I fell off a platform at work. Now hand or safety rails it was night. I hurt my shoulder and back. I reported the incident to my supervisor. I had hoped the pain would subside. It did not. I went to the emergency room, and x-Ray was done workers comp paperwork was complete and I was returned to work stating it was a sprain.
10 days pass and the pain is still there. Additionally there is numbness in my right fingers. I go to another doctor. They order and MRI. I have 3 bulged cervical disks and a pinched nerve. Radiculopathy is the term I think. The workers comp company is Sedgwick.
I then get put off work for 5 weeks and was paid by workers comp. I was sent to a neurosurgeon who said I wasn't a candidate for surgery. I was given a return to work with restrictions. I was also given more PT which I did. The doctor ordered more PT but workers comp never approved it. I began feeling better and work got very busy. I didn't push workers comp. I though I was recovering well.
A year down the road I still have pain. Mainly when driving and standing. I also still have numbness in my right hand and arm pain. I am working with workers comp now, and getting more PT. The doctor said I will never feel better and the workers comp rep let it slip that I probably will never get better either.
In my condition I usually do my job well. However there are times where I am working extended periods and I can barely tolerate the pain. I don't complain, but it is getting old. I can't lay flat on my back, have been sleeping in a chair for over a year. I would like to start sleeping with my wife eventually. That's getting old as well.
So I am getting very angry with the process. It seems like treatment has been a huge battle. Doctors will not see me because either I am not their patient or they won't deal with workers comp. My primary care physician is the VA, so that doesn't apply for work related injuries. So I have been restricted to express care clinics. Seems their fix is pain killers, which I refuse due to my job.
My thoughts are...the employer created an unsafe work condition. The condition was expressed but never improved. An employee was injured. I feel like the insurance company (Sedgwick) that is contracted by the employer should be doing everything possible to help me and return my health and life back to normal. I do not feel entitled, but I want fixed.
I have considered contacting an attorney, but the closest is 3 hours away. And I do not want to create waves with my employer. I still need a job.
Do I have any options at all?