As the treating doctor’s role is so important following a workplace injury, and the doctor’s opinion can significantly impact on the injured worker’s rights, it is extremely important that an injured worker is completely comfortable with their treating doctor.
Most injured workers don’t (try to) annoy their lawyers. However there are always a few injured sods who will intentionally or non-intentionally do things that make their lawyer roll their eyes by, for example, calling or emailing their lawyer way too often, bringing legal and/or medical research and by using their lawyer as a kind of therapist. So if your lawyer is avoiding your phone calls or emails and appears uncaring towards you, it could be because you are doing one or more of the following annoying things.
Many IME Psychiatrists, even those who testify for workcover insurers avoid diagnosing psychological / psychiatric conditions related to injured workers’ trauma. They generally do this by deliberately avoiding any tests that were designed to assess the injured worker’s mental condition in question. Is it any wonder the IME finds no evidence of for example, PTSD or major depression when s/he doesn’t even test for it?
The aim of conciliation in Victoria is to resolve disputes and avoid litigation. The injured worker can request conciliation if there is a dispute between the injured worker and the agent (insurer) and/or employer about the injured worker’s claim. What’s more, if your WorkCover insurer fails to respond to a request within 28 days you can also lodge a Conciliation.
According to the Latrobe Valley Express,the (new) Victorian Ombudsman, Deborah Glass, welcomes ‘good’ whinges, including whinges (complaints) about WorkVover Vic (WorkSafe Vic), and is pushing for changes in legislation, in a bid to encourage more complaints. So guys, let’s bring on the workcover complaints!
The following article re workplace bullying was submitted by “Harry Hatzis”, as a Guest Post, and focuses on the credibility of a bullied worker, providing some insightful tips. Harry is writing an academic legal thesis on workplace bullying, victimisation, harassment and racial discrimination and whether the laws provide adequate redress to psychiatrically injured workers.
Many workcover victims ask us whether IMEs can prevent an injured worker (you) from getting recommended surgery. Unfortunately the answer is “yes” but the following tips may ensure you win the “battle of the medical opinions” and have your surgery approved by workcover.
The workcover system is, in my seriously injured opinion, designed to do one thing and that is to remove all “responsibility” from the injured worker, and alas, remove all control from the injured worker, which –all too often– leads to desperation, frustration and a myriad of secondary psychological injuries.The following somewhat controversial article aims to make injured workers think hard and show a potential way to stay in control of their claim.
When surveillance material (e.g video) is sent —by the workcover insurer— to an Independent Medical Examination doctor (IME) or a Medical Panel for commentary/opinion/assessment, basically the surveilled injured worker is entitled, by law, to explain (alleged) “inconsistencies” between the surveillance video and the injured worker’s medical history/restriction.
The following post was submitted by “Mad Chef” and provides very useful information on how to quickly obtain copies of your medical reports held by your workcover insurer.