An auto accident is a traumatic event that may cause permanent injury. It is important that you seek immediate medical attention following an accident so that you can actively participate in your recovery. Some questions that you should ask your doctor include:
If / When Can I Return To Work?
Your doctor may give you a note to excuse you from work if they feel you should not work during your recovery. However, not working may be problematic, as you will lose out on potential wages. In order to receive compensation for lost wages, you must have solid proof of your working limitations. This note will prove to the insurance adjuster that your injuries resulted in wage loss.
Furthermore, returning to work before your doctor recommends, can cause your injuries to worsen, and may prolong your recovery period. It is important that you follow your doctor’s recommendations so that you can recover as swiftly as possible. You can also ask your doctor to estimate when they believe you will be able to return to work.
What Kind of Medication (If Any) Can or Will I Be Taking?
After an auto accident, you may be prescribed certain medications, to treat pain or any symptoms that you may be experiencing. However, you should never take over-the-counter (OTC) medications unless your doctor specifically approves them. OTC medications may negatively interact with any prescription medications you may be taking. In some cases, mixing medications may worsen your condition. Always ask your doctor which medications are safe for you to use.
How Severe Are My Injuries?
When your body undergoes extreme stress, it will release chemicals that can delay feelings of pain. As a result, you should ask your medical provider about the severity of your injuries so that you can properly document and care for them. Doing so will also provide you with an official record detailing the severity of your injuries; providing solid evidence to the insurance company regarding your injuries.
Will My Injuries Cause Future Health Problems?
In some cases, small injuries have the potential to develop into greater and/or more severe injuries in the future. As it stands, you have a right to be compensated for your injuries, including future injuries. If you have severe injuries, you might need to continue to receive medical treatment long after your case settles. However, to prove a need for future/continued medical care, you will need the opinion of a medical professional.
Unfortunately, some injuries, such as disfigurement, loss of limb, etc, do not heal. These types of injuries are referred to as ‘residual injuries’. You will be entitled to greater compensation if your doctor finds that any of your injuries are residual, or that they will cause more and potentially greater problems in the future.
Will They Accept PIP or a Medical Lien?
Sometimes, the cost of medical care prevents an individual from seeking medical attention. Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance and medical liens help individuals involved in auto accidents receive necessary medical attention in a timely manner. In the state of Utah, the minimum limit of Personal Injury Protection (PIP) insurance is $3,000 per person in an accident.
Similarly, a medical lien is a formal agreement stating the medical provider’s intention to collect payment after your case has been settled. However, you cannot enter into a lien without first hiring an attorney, otherwise, it will not be legally binding. Liens prevent your medical bills from being sent to collections giving you some peace of mind as you go through this process.