• How Gaps in Medical Treatment Affect Your Injury Claim
  • July 13, 2018 | Author: Adam S. Kutner
  • Law Firm: Adam S. Kutner & Associates - Las Vegas Office
  • When you’re the victim of a personal injury accident, receiving proper medical treatment is a critically important part of winning the compensation you deserve. Your medical care is essential for documenting your physical injuries and establishing evidence of your pain and suffering.

    It’s critical that you don’t have gaps in your medical care after an injury accident. You will also want to work with an established personal injury lawyer to document your injuries for your claim. Here’s how gaps in your medical treatment may impact your injury claim.


    What’s a Gap in Medical Care After a Personal Injury Accident?

    There are several ways that a gap in medical care can occur with regards to an injury accident. A lapse in medical care can occur immediately after your accident occurs, or it can occur weeks or months after. Here are some ways that a gap in medical care can happen for an accident victim:


    1. Failing to Get Emergency Care After the Accident

    It’s critical to get emergency care after an accident. In almost all cases, you should seek urgent care right away. You may be critically injured and not realize it. Emergency care can ensure that you’re stabilized and that you don’t have life-threatening injuries or other injuries that require immediate treatment.

    In addition to ensuring that you get the critical care that you need, seeking medical treatment immediately after the accident establishes the link between the accident and your injuries. If there’s a gap between the accident and when you seek care, the other side may argue that your injuries aren’t the result of the event. They might say that you’re trying to blame old medical problems or even new medical problems on the accident.

    If the jury isn’t convinced that your medical bills came from the accident, they may decline to order the other side to pay for your damages even if the other side is responsible for causing the accident. Your medical care team can be your best advocate witnesses to prove the link between the accident and your injuries.

    One of the reasons to seek emergency care after your treatment is to fight back against the claim that you could have done more to address your injuries. The other side might say that you waited until your injuries got worse. They might say that there’s more you could have done to mitigate your injuries and recover faster if you had sought care.


    2. Not Getting Follow-Up Care That You Need

    Once you’ve received the emergency care that you need, it’s important to stick to your follow-up care plan. For example, if your doctor says to come back in two weeks, it’s important to go back in two weeks. If your care providers say to receive physical therapy or schedule in-home nursing care, it’s important to follow their recommendations. It’s also important to abide by any restrictions from your care providers like limits on working or lifting heavy objects.

    If you don’t receive the follow-up care that you need, the other side may argue that you aren't honest about your injuries. They might say that your care providers are inflating your injuries and that you’re not really as hurt as you’re claiming. Also, they might say that you’re not doing everything that you can to recover quickly. You need follow-up care to establish a care pattern and determine a long-term prognosis for the injuries stemming from the accident.


    3. You Don’t Receive Mental Health Care

    When you’re getting medical care after a personal injury accident, it’s important not to overlook the importance of getting the mental health care that you need. Psychological health injuries are a legitimate and devastating injury that you may have after an injury accident. You may have ongoing fear. You may find yourself reliving the trauma of the event, or you may have post-traumatic stress disorder.

    After an injury accident, it’s important to treat your mental health as well as your physical health. Mental health care is a critical component of putting your life back together after an accident. Also, mental and emotional injuries are a category of damages for which you can claim compensation in an accident claim. Receiving mental health care helps you diagnose psychological injuries and establish a treatment pattern.


    How Do I Use Medical Treatment to Prove My Claim?

    Obtaining medical treatment after a personal injury accident helps you establish the link between the accident and your injuries. Immediate and follow-up medical care helps you prove that you suffered the injuries in the accident. It also enables you to show the full nature of your injuries so that you can receive compensation for everything related to the accident.

    It’s important to include all of your medical expenses in your claim. Your medical expenses extend beyond just the costs for your emergency room or urgent care visit. All of the medical costs that you have because of the accident are part of your claim.

    If you need crutches or a walker, you can include the expense in your claim. If you need physical therapy or specialist care, you can request compensation for the cost. A gap in medical care can open the door for the other side to argue that these expenses shouldn’t be included in your claim.

    Also, your physical injuries and expenses form the basis of your pain and suffering and emotional suffering compensation. Your level of physical suffering is directly related to your physical injuries. Documenting your injuries helps you prove the extent of your physical and emotional distress because of the accident.


    What Should I Do to Preserve My Rights?

    Gaps in medical care can make it more difficult to win the compensation that you deserve. After a personal injury accident, you should seek immediate medical care. Next, you should receive the mental health care that you need.

    An experienced personal injury accident attorney can help you ensure that you receive the right medical care to preserve and advance your claim.