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Written by: Tracey Jones
In the course of handling a workers’ compensation case, an adjuster will have to communicate with the employee’s treating physician to collect valuable medical information relevant to the diagnosis and ability to return to work. As noted in N.C.G.S § 97-25.6(c)(2), Written Communications with Healthcare Providers:
Defendants may communicate with the Plaintiff’s authorized health care provider in writing, without the express authorization of Plaintiff, to obtain certain relevant medical information not available in Plaintiff’s medical records, provided Defendants provide Plaintiff with contemporaneous written notice.
Without express authorization by the employee, but with contemporaneous written notice – Defendants may request the following additional information not available in the employee’s medical records:
Defendants must provide Plaintiff a copy of the healthcare provider’s response within ten business days of receipt.
When communicating with healthcare providers, NC adjusters and Defendants can use the following examples as a guide:
It is critical to keep in mind that all correspondence with the treating physician must be shared with the employee. All correspondence must occur with an authorized healthcare provider.