Overcoming Medical Treatment Challenges of COVID-19 with Telemedicine
It is unquestionable that the coronavirus pandemic has had a profound impact on every single American and has created countless challenges across the country, including for those who have been injured in the scope of employment and are struggling to recover from a health crisis while concurrently ensuring the financial viability of their families. And in a world where injured workers are already concerned about their ability to obtain compensation and benefits, NBC Miami 6 News recently published an article that triggers an additional concern. Some of South Florida’s biggest hospitals, like Memorial Healthcare System and Jackson Health, are once again pausing elective surgeries. Unfortunately, halting elective surgeries can equate to further delays for injured workers who have already been waiting to have the procedures that they need to heal from work-related injuries.
Alternative Medical Treatment for Work-Related Injuries in the Context of COVID-19
If you need to have a surgery performed, this obviously can’t be done virtually. However, there are virtual alternatives for many of the medical treatments that you were likely going to see your doctor face-to-face for before the pandemic. Telemedicine is an ideal alternative available for many workers, depending on the level of injury, that can allow an injured employee to be seen by their healthcare professional in a safe and timely manner. Over the past thirty years, it has expanded so much that the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention estimate that telemedicine use will occupy a $30 billion corner of the healthcare market this year alone.
The Benefits of Telehealth and Telemedicine
Most people use their smartphone, tablet or computer to participate in these virtual appointments that often allow for real-time telephone or live audio-video interaction between a patient and their medical provider. Benefits of this include:
- Built-in social distancing that lowers potential coronavirus exposures for both patients and their doctors
- Allowing those who typically have difficulty accessing care – like the elderly and those who live far away from medical facilities – to obtain the treatment they need
To maximize these benefits, ensure that you:
- Communicate with your employer’s insurer to understand the availability of covered telehealth and telemedicine services
- Schedule your day around your telehealth appointments just like you would an in-person visit and don’t skip appointments or stop treatment until the doctor instructs you to
Don’t Face These Challenges Alone
The workers’ compensation process involves rules and procedures that can be complicated and confusing at the best of times, and this is heightened during the current crisis when things are continuously changing for us all. In the time of COVID-19, it’s especially important to have an experienced attorney on your side when pursuing or appealing a claim who can help you adapt appropriately in a way that maximizes your opportunity of success. As the Miami workers’ compensation attorneys at Payer & Associates, we have significant experience adapting to unpredictable circumstances and helping workers who have been injured in a wide variety of contexts. We are happy to answer any questions or concerns that you have so you should reach out today for a free consultation.