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Construction Injuries And The Significance Of Medical Claims Review For Workers’ Compensation

Workers Compensation

There is heightened potential for workplace injuries, specifically in the construction industry as the nature of work is highly physical involving complicated machinery. High-risk situations like tall heights or congested workplaces pose threats to the health and life of workers. Work-related injuries are entitled for compensation and the employer should have workers’ compensation insurance in place.

Common Construction Injury Types

There are various reasons that lead to construction injuries. Some injuries are easily noticeable whereas some are less obvious and require a thorough medical examination to identify the cause of the discomfort. The processing of claims for compensation is a long-haul procedure. Familiarizing with the types of injuries is necessary to identify the injuries.

Falls from Heights

These considered as one of the “fatal four” workplace accidents as these can result in severe injuries. This happens when a worker falls from scaffoldings, cranes, roofs, ladders or flight of stairs. These traumatic injuries can cause pain, suffering, disfigurement and make the injured unable to work. Medical record review for workers’ compensation aids the attorneys to analyze the severity of the injury.

Falling Objects

If construction materials or tools above the worker are not adequately secured, there is the risk of workers being hit by these objects. These accidents can cause brain or spinal cord injury even if appropriate safety measures are followed. It can even be fatal.

Overexertion

The construction industry requires excessive physical effort which leads to overexertion. It happens due to repetitive jobs like pulling and pushing of heavy machinery or throwing something. This results in injury to the muscles and joints. Some of the injuries persist throughout the worker’s life.

Machinery Accidents

Workers are at great risk of injury when they come in contact with heavy equipment or machinery. Any malfunction or error of judgment while using equipment with moving parts can result in severe injuries leading to amputation. This can interrupt the entire life of a person.

Bodily Reactions

Occupational exposure to chemicals, mold and toxic fumes results in allergic reactions which occur due to the build-up of toxins in the body over time. This causes delayed-onset reactions like difficulty in breathing, even leading to loss of pulmonary function and irritation of skin.

Fires and Explosion

It is one of the common injuries that occur at construction sites. The U.S Bureau of Labor Statistics reports that close to 66 workers are being killed every year due to the exposure to hazardous chemicals and burns due to fire. Exposed wiring, faulty gas pipes and exposure to inflammable substances can result in serious injuries which cause life-time pain and permanent disabilities.

Trench or Building Collapses

When a trench being built collapses with the workers trapped in it, or when a building being demolished unexpectedly collapses, it can cause catastrophic injury to the workers. In such accidents, the negligence theory of “res ipsa loquitur” is applicable which means workers can claim compensation without proving who was negligent.

Types of medical conditions that arise due to construction injuries:

  • Fracture of bones
  • Dislocation of joints
  • Amputation of fingers, limbs or toes
  • Complete or partial loss of eyesight
  • Skin burns
  • Cuts or lacerations
  • Brain and spinal cord injuries

Why Medical Records Review Is Important for Workers’ Compensation Claims?

Medical records are the authentic source of patient information that helps the attorneys to defend the claimant in workers’ compensation cases. A person who has suffered from work-related injuries is eligible for compensation from employers or their insurance companies. However, there can be disputes regarding the claims even when there is true knowledge that these claims are legitimate. In such scenarios, an expert construction accident attorney can ensure protection of the worker’s legal rights for compensation.

Injured employees are entitled to the following:

  • Wage replacement benefits
  • Medical treatment
  • Vocational rehabilitation
  • Other benefits

Construction accidents are complex as determining the severity of the injury and analyzing the degree of disability need meticulous interpretation of medical records. Therefore, gathering of medical evidence from the medical records is the first step taken by attorneys.

The below given data is essential for attorneys to litigate workers’ compensation lawsuits for the plaintiff.

  • Date of injury
  • Location of the injury
  • Severity of the injury
  • Degree of disability
  • Clinical observations
  • Medications administered
  • Diagnostic test results
  • Medical History
  • Medical expenses

Medical claims review helps to assess the medical provider’s treatment plan, and time frame of the care provided. It helps determine the intensity of the injury and compute treatment costs. Review of medical records is a time-consuming and intricate process. Outsourced medical review services can make the entire process easier without the attorneys having to comprehend complex medical terminologies. Attorneys can focus on their case and successfully establish the liabilities and damages essential for claiming rightful compensation.

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