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What makes workers’ compensation medical coverage valuable?

On Behalf of | Jun 26, 2023 | Workers' Compensation |

Many people in high-risk professions in North Carolina have health insurance at least partially sponsored by their employer. They know that whatever happens to them or a member of their immediate family, they will have the coverage necessary to get treatment. Some professionals hurt on the job or diagnosed with a medical condition related to their employment will use their health insurance to cover their costs. Some people even use their own insurance policy to pay for their care entirely on their own without any employer contributions.

Injured employees may worry that filing a workers’ compensation claim could put their job at risk or damage their employer’s finances. What they don’t realize is that filing a claim could actually afford them substantially better coverage in many cases.

Workers’ compensation pays for all of someone’s treatment costs

Provided that an individual follows the right steps when filing a claim and the doctor overseeing their care recommends an appropriate course of treatment, they can potentially receive no-cost medical care for their work-related medical condition. Private health insurance tends to have cost-sharing policies attached that force people to pay a significant portion of their costs themselves.

Many policies have large deductibles. Patients have to pay thousands of dollars for care before their policy starts covering their bills. It is also very common for companies to assess coinsurance, which makes the patient responsible for a percentage of the total bill. They may also have to pay a copay every time they attend an appointment or pick up a new prescription medication. Workers’ compensation does not assess any of those patient responsibility costs. The employee can potentially receive surgery or attend physical therapy for weeks without paying anything themselves for that treatment.

Getting benefits can help people stay on the job

Especially if the medical condition related to someone’s employment makes it hard or painful for them to fulfill their daily job responsibilities, they may need accommodations from their employer. Different tasks, assistive technology or even permission to take frequent breaks are all accommodations that could help keep someone on the job despite their health concerns.

It is often easier for someone to request accommodations for their work-related medical condition when their employer is already aware of the issue and there is a physician helping manage their recovery. Pursuing workers’ compensation benefits may be one way for injured workers to keep their income stable and their personal expenses low after their employment affects their health.