How to Choose Your Own Doctor in Your Workers' Compensation Claim
Is Your Doctor BWC Certified?In an Ohio workers' compensation claim, a medical provider must be certified by the Ohio Bureau of Workers' Compensation. Most doctors and clinics will have a "BWC Certified" sign indicating whether they are BWC Certified in their waiting area. However, the BWC also has a list of certified providers available if an injured worker is finding it difficult to locate a doctor or other medical provider who will accept a workers' compensation patient.
Many Family Doctors Do Not Accept Workers' Compensation Patients.Unfortunately, a sad reality is that many family doctors are no longer willing to treat patients with a workers' compensation claim. The burdensome requirements of paperwork and the uncertainty of authorization for treatment has frustrated many doctors to the point that they no longer wish to bother with work injury claims. If your doctor will not treat your work injury claim, ask him or her for a referral to a doctor who will. Your workers' compensation lawyer may also be able to refer you to a doctor who accepts workers' compensation patients.
The Injured Worker Chooses the Treating Doctor, Not the BWC or Employer.Employers will often direct an injured worker to a certain doctor or clinic following a work injury. Employers often request that the worker be seen by an "Occupational Health" doctor, or company doctor. However, in most cases, the injured worker is entitled to choose the doctor who will treat him or her. This is true even if the workers has already seen and started treatment with a doctor he or she was directed to see by the employer. Be aware that in some cases a collective bargaining agreement may limit an injured worker's rights of choosing a doctor. Thus, it is important to consult your union representative if the employer directs which doctor you should see.