Finding Top Orthopedic Doctors Who Accept Workers’ Compensation in New York: Your Step-By-Step Guide

Find NY Workers' Comp Orthopedic Surgeon

Approximately one-third of Americans suffer from injuries or conditions that need an orthopedist’s care at any given time. Yet, finding an orthopedic surgeon can prove to be challenging.

The prospect of finding orthopedic doctors who accept workers’ compensation in New York City can be even more intimidating—but it’s not impossible. Fortunately, with this guide, finding the right doctor doesn’t have to be a headache.

Keep reading to learn how right now.

What Are Orthopedic Doctors?

Orthopedic surgeons are doctors that treat musculoskeletal injuries. These are injuries that involve:

  • Muscles
  • Tendons
  • Ligaments
  • Bones

Examples include torn muscles, fractured bones, dislocated joints, and spinal disc injuries. Orthopedic doctors also treat repetitive strain injuries like carpal tunnel, bursitis, and damaged rotator cuffs.

Orthopedic Treatments

Orthopedic doctors are qualified to provide a wide range of surgical and non-surgical treatments. Common examples include:

  • Setting and casting bones
  • Replacing joints
  • Surgery to relieve pressure on spinal nerves
  • Spinal fusion surgery
  • Disc replacement surgery
  • Drainage of internal fluids
  • Cortisol injections
  • Shock wave therapy
  • Joint manipulation

Some orthopedic doctors may also provide physical therapy.

Specializations

Orthopedic doctors may choose to specialize in a narrow portion of their field.

For example, orthopedic surgeons typically focus only on surgical interventions. Other orthopedic doctors may specialize in treating specific parts of the body, such as hands, shoulders, knees, or the spine.

Orthopedics and Workers’ Compensation

Orthopedic doctors often play a key role in workers’ compensation cases.

What Is Workers’ Comp?

If you are hurt on the job, you may be eligible for workers’ compensation. This is when your employer is considered liable for your injury and the associated expenses. New York employers must have workers’ compensation insurance. In most cases, your employer’s insurance policy covers your medical costs.

However, it is important to understand that workers’ compensation does not infer universal coverage. Limits may apply. For example, you may be subject to reduced benefits if:

  • You are found to be partially liable for your injury
  • Part of your injury or condition is determined to be preexisting
  • Part of your injury or condition is determined to be due to other external sources

Workers’ Compensation in NYC

More than 80,000 workers in New York City are injured on the job every year. That’s almost three percent of the workforce.

Workplace injuries happen in every industry, but workers are most likely to be injured in:

  • Hospitals and other medical care facilities
  • Public administration jobs
  • Law enforcement and correctional jobs
  • Educational facilities
  • Courier or delivery positions

The most common causes of workplace injury are:

The Role of Orthopedic Doctors in Workers’ Comp

Orthopedic doctors play two key roles in handling workers’ compensation cases.

Helping Patients

First, orthopedic doctors help workers injured on the job recover. In this role, they:

  • Perform physical assessments to determine the nature and severity of injuries
  • Identify the best course of treatment
  • Conduct surgery or deliver the chosen treatment
  • Provide referrals to complementary practitioners (e.g. physical therapists or pain management specialists)
  • Determine when it is safe and appropriate for patients to go back to work

Medical/Legal Expertise

Orthopedic doctors also play a critical role in the legal side of workers’ compensation cases. Specifically, they:

  • Determine whether injuries are, in fact, wholly or partially work-related
  • Set dates and restrictions dictating when employees may return to work and what they may or may not do
  • Report to the insurance company paying the claim
  • Decide whether the patient can recover (or has recovered) enough to resume their normal duties or if they will need to be transferred, retrained, or otherwise reassigned

Why Both Roles Are Important

Obviously, it is important that patients have doctors they confident in and comfortable with. The patient-physician relationship is proven to be a deciding factor in the quality and efficacy of treatment.

Yet in this case, doctors have an extremely strong influence on patients’ work situations and finances. They dictate if and when patients can go back to work and how much of their care will be covered by workers’ compensation insurance.

Therefore, it also essential that patients choose a workers’ comp doctor in NYC with whom they can agree on these fronts.

Choosing Doctors Who Accept Workers’ Compensation

If you are injured at work, you have the right to select which doctor(s) you will see. To find the best doctor for you, follow these steps.

Get a List of Qualified Orthopedic Doctors Near You

You can request such a list from your employer’s insurance company or from your own physician. You can ask friends and family for referrals or use a free online orthopedic search tool.

Once you have the list, you will need to cross off or disregard orthopedic doctors specializing in areas that are not relevant to you. For example, if you have a hand injury, you don’t want to contact orthopedic surgeons specializing only in spinal injuries.

Check Waitlist Times

Some doctors may be able to see you right away, especially if you urgently need care. Other orthopedists may have long waiting lists. They may be unable to see you for months.

Look for a doctor that can get you in for an initial appointment in a timely manner.

Verify Credentials and Reputation

Double-check that the doctor(s) you have selected are board-certified and up-to-date with all relevant medical and professional requirements. You can do this quickly and easily using the American Board of Orthopedic Surgeons (ABOS) portal.

Make sure that the orthopedist is an authorized Workers’ Compensation Board provider, otherwise, your medical bills related to work injury will not be covered.

After that, you may wish to browse one or two review websites. While other patients’ reviews are subjective and not guaranteed to be true, they can often give you helpful insight into a doctor’s:

  • Competency
  • Timeliness
  • Bedside manner
  • Patient experience

Steer clear of doctors that sound like a poor fit for you or that consistently receive bad reviews.

Look at the “Extras”

Many top New York workers’ compensation doctors offer same-day appointments. Some offer patient pick-up and drop-off services. Some offices boast doctors and nurses that speak multiple languages.

While these features may seem like unnecessary “extras,” they can strongly improve your experience. Take the time to see what the doctors you are considering can offer.

Finding a Workers’ Comp Doctor

The fastest and easiest way to find doctors who accept workers’ compensation in NYC is to rely on the experts. These have helped injured New Yorkers just like you find the help they need. If you’ve been injured, don’t wait.

Call (800) 897-8440 or fill out the form below to find an experienced NYC workers’ comp orthopedic doctor near you today.

 

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