“Can I Choose My Own Doctor?”

July 2, 2020
"Can I Choose My Own Doctor?" Florida's Workers' Compensation Law

It’s an important question that you should know the answer to if you haven’t already. And the short answer is, if you’re in Florida, NO – you’re unable to choose your own doctor. If you get injured on the job your employer, or their insurance carrier, has the right to choose your treating physician in most cases. Ultimately, you have no choice. But even though you aren’t able to choose your own doctor, there are a few exceptions to this rule. And if you’re curious to learn more about them, then continue reading below. If you’re ever injured in the workplace, it’s important you’re aware of the process of receiving treatment from an authorized physician.

When You Can & Can’t Choose Your Own Doctor

Employers & Insurance Carriers

Once you report your injury within 30 days of its occurrence to your employer, they will direct you to a primary care physician. And if that physician refers a specialist to you, that specialist must also be authorized by your employer or their insurance carrier. Generally, you have no choice in the matter. If you go seek treatment from a physician who isn’t authorized, then your employer doesn’t need to compensate you under Florida’s workers’ compensation law.

With the occurrence of a medical emergency, however, there is a limited exception. If you are injured on the job, for instance, and your injury requires immediate medical attention, then you are permitted to seek treatment at the nearest emergency room without authorization. Reporting your injury to your employer and waiting to receive a referral to an authorized medical provider can take too long when you need medical treatment right away. This is one of few exceptions where you have the option to choose your own doctor.

Change Request

If you’re unhappy with the physician that was chosen for you, Florida’s Workers’ compensation law does allow you to request a change. This, however, can only be done once and it still needs to be authorized by your employer or insurance carrier. Your request must be done in writing and it can only be done once “for any one accident.” What this means is that you can only request a change of one specialist and you can’t do the same for your primary care physician or another specialist (if all treatment arises from the same workplace accident).

Exceptions

There are a few exceptions to the rule of having your physician authorized by your employer or insurance carrier. They are:

  • Immediate Treatment – As mentioned above, if you require immediate treatment for your workplace injury, you don’t need authorization for medical care.
  • Late Response – If you request in writing that you want a change in the physician or specialist care and the insurer doesn’t respond within 5 days, then you are free to select a doctor of your choosing.
  • Managed Care Arrangement – If the insurance company has a managed care arrangement for workers’ comp injuries you should be able to choose a doctor within that provider network.

Call The Experts at Our Pharmacy Network For Assistance in Florida Workers’ Compensation

Receiving the medical care you need can be a tricky thing to accomplish when there’s so much in the Florida workers’ compensation process to cover. And if you need help navigating through the process, don’t hesitate to call the professionals at Our Pharmacy Network. OPN isn’t just dedicated to delivering medication to your doorstep. They’ll also work closely with attorneys and physicians to ensure that you’re given the treatment you deserve. If you’re curious to learn more, call us at 844.238.9313 or visit our contact page.

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