Second opinions regarding medical treatment remain an important option for anyone faced with a medical ailment or condition. This includes the possibility of surgery. Among the group of people who may benefit from seeing another physician are those injured in a workplace accident.
In Minnesota, under state law, employers must provide medical treatment in the form of surgery if necessary to help an employee recover from an injury or occupational disease. And before approval of the surgery, the employee and employer may request a second opinion.
Workers may select their own doctor
Minnesota workers also have the option to select their own doctor to treat a workplace injury. But, in some cases, the employer may force the employee to visit a designated health care provider.
It is not unheard of to learn that a doctor selected by an employer’s insurance company may contend the injury is not severe enough. As a result, workers may find themselves forced back to work too soon, potentially aggravating the injury.
Such a scenario exemplifies why it is so important to know that workers have the ability to obtain a second medical opinion regarding their injury.
The employer pays for second opinion
Then a question surfaces: Who will pay for a second opinion? The employer does.
For example, the employer must pay costs related to that second medical opinion if the employee wants to seek a second opinion. And if the employer insists that the employee get a second opinion prior to surgery, then the employer must pay for those examination costs.
It is critical to know that it does not work in the employee’s favor in declining a second opinion if his or her employer requests it. If the employee refuses that follow up, the employer may deny paying for the proposed surgery. However, this scenario may only happen if the employer has gained medical information that disputes the practicality of the proposed treatment.
The trust factor comes into play
Surgery can be successful or even unsuccessful. This is why getting a second medical opinion regarding your treatment is so important. Trust is a crucial factor when it comes to working with and choosing a medical professional such as a surgeon.