After an injury, prompt medical care is crucial. You need medical treatment to protect your health. However, you also need medical attention to document your injuries for a personal injury claim.
Waiting to see a doctor can harm your personal injury claim. A defense attorney or an insurance company may claim that the accident did not cause your injuries because of your delay in seeking treatment.
Therefore, you want to locate the best doctor in West Palm Beach to provide medical care after an accident or injury. For the most part, searching for a doctor to treat accident injuries is similar to seeking a doctor to treat a specific type of illness or condition.
Tips for Finding the Best Doctor in West Palm Beach
Five tips that may be helpful when searching for a doctor to treat accident injuries are:
Do Not Assume Your Primary Care Physician Is Your Best Choice
Unless your primary care physician has experience treating accident injuries, they may not be the best choice. Most primary care physicians focus their practice on internal medicine. They usually do not treat accident injuries, such as broken bones, spinal cord injuries, traumatic brain injuries, and neck injuries.
In most cases, your primary care physician will refer you to a specialist. Therefore, you may want to consult with your primary care doctor to obtain referrals to specialists or other physicians. Working with your primary care doctor can reduce the stress and time it takes to find the right doctor.
You can also ask friends and family members for referrals. However, they may refer you to a doctor they “like” instead of the best doctor to treat your accident injuries. Medical referrals from a trusted physician are often the best way to find a doctor in West Palm Beach, FL.
Ask the Doctor if He Has Experience Treating Accident Injuries
Doctors who have experience working with accident victims may better understand the symptoms associated with common accident injuries.
For example, they may realize that bruising around the abdomen and swelling could be a sign of seat belt syndrome, which is an often overlooked injury that could cause severe conditions if not diagnosed and treated.
Specialists with experience handling accident cases also understand that you will need detailed medical records for your case. The doctor is more likely to include much more detail about the accident, your symptoms, injuries, and treatment compared to a primary care physician or doctor who has never treated accident patients.
Find a Doctor That Will Document Prior Injuries and Conditions
It is important to tell your doctor about all previous injuries and conditions. Your personal injury lawyer will understand how to handle this issue with the insurance provider.
If you do not disclose this information up front, the insurance company could use this against you if you go to court. It could make you appear to be a liar for not disclosing any pre-existing conditions or injuries.
Do Not Stop Going to the Doctor When You Feel Better
Choosing a doctor is just the first step in the process of treating accident injuries.
Find a doctor who explains your treatment plan in detail and then follow that treatment plan. Failing to obtain the prescribed medical care could result in receiving much less for your injury claim. The insurance company will allege that you made your injuries more severe because you refused treatment.
If you disagree with your doctor’s treatment plan, get a second opinion. Stopping treatment can harm your health. It can also hurt your personal injury case.
Be Cautious of Doctors that Advertise as “Accident Physicians”
You want and need a doctor who has experience treating accident injuries and understands the need for detailed medical records. However, choosing a doctor that only treats accident patients may not be in your best interest.
“Accident doctors” may only want to use up your PIP (no-fault) insurance coverage. After your no-fault insurance benefits are depleted, the doctor may tell you that you must pay in advance for treatment or he cannot treat you.
PIP doctors or accident doctors may not have your best interest in mind when providing treatment. Going to one of these doctors could hurt your case.
You Are in Control of Your Medical Care
Choosing a doctor in West Palm Beach can be confusing and frustrating. If you do not have a referral, you may feel that you are throwing darts at names on a wall while blindfolded.
If your doctor does not refer you to a specialist, there are other things you can do. Read the online reviews for the physician, as well as any information about his education and experience. You should also check to see if there are any complaints filed against the doctor.
If you are still having trouble locating a doctor to treat your accident injuries, ask an experienced, trusted personal injury lawyer. Injury lawyers work with specialists and physicians throughout West Palm Beach, FL.
Attorneys know which physicians understand how to assist their patients to build a medical record that can help them when they are ready to file their personal injury claim. They also hear their clients complain about or praise their doctors.