How hip replacements factor into the workers’ compensation equation in Georgia
Hip injuries can severely reduce your mobility which, in turn, affects your ability to work. They can also cause severe discomfort while sitting and standing. Hip injuries can occur due to strenuous activities, such as the lifting of heavy objects or accidents on the job. Depending on the severity, most hip-related injuries can be quite painful, especially if it results in a hip fracture.
However, hip-related injuries can be treated with modern-day hip replacement surgery. If a worker has sustained a hip injury during working hours, it’s possible to receive benefits from workers’ compensation to pay for such treatment.
Most Georgia workers have the option of seeking workers’ compensation benefits which can significantly cut down medical costs as a hip replacement procedure can be quite expensive.
What is hip replacement surgery?
When your hip is seriously damaged, it could affect your leg movements and your upper body’s support. This can cause limping in excruciating pain or difficulty walking. An operation may be required to fully restore the hip and repair damage to the tendons, joints and muscles. Special glue can be used to hold the ball-like joint above the thigh bone into place while a prosthetic socket will be swapped into its position.
After your surgeon has determined that the joint is successfully resting, you may be required to undergo physiotherapy to regain your mobility and cope with your hip muscle adequately. During the first few recovery stages, you might be prohibited from heavy lifting or applying direct pressure to the joint.
You might require a walking aid, such as a crutch or walker, to provide support. During your recovery phase, you should be eligible for medical costs, as well as temporary and permanent disability compensation.
Does workers’ compensation in Georgia cover hip replacement surgery?
To receive compensation for a hip replacement procedure, it must be necessary to alleviate your injury. In most scenarios, a worker has damaged their hip during their shift, and they were known to show no symptoms of a bad hip before the injury.
In this case, the worker is entitled to workers’ compensation to cover the needed surgery costs. However, some insurance companies will try to deny your claim by arguing that you had already shown signs of a deteriorating hip prior to your injury. They may also deny your doctor the authorization to carry out the surgery. You must either show substantial evidence backing up your claim or hire an attorney to further increase your success odds.
When to file a workers’ comp claim for a hip injury
If you or a loved one are involved in a work-related accident, you should report the situation to the nearest manager, colleague or director as soon as possible.
If your injury has been brought about by constant labor, you should report your discomfort and noticeable hip issues to your employer.
Benefits of a successful workers’ compensation claim
If you win your compensation claim, here are the benefits you can expect:
1. Additional medical hip treatment
After the insurance company has catered to your hip replacement expenses, you may receive additional post-surgery treatment to get back on your feet again. This can be in physical therapy, surgery revision, pain management and drug prescriptions to restore your condition. However, like many operations, there is a risk that the procedure may not go as well. In this event, the insurance company will be required to pay until your doctor can officially clear your situation.
2. Temporary partial disability wage loss benefits
Even after the procedure, your company should continually provide you an income while you heal. The amount of salary settled can be two-thirds of your usual pay.
3. Permanent partial disability benefits
After your hip replacement procedure, your doctor will be required under Georgia’s workers’ compensation law to evaluate any permanent partial disability in order to give a reasonable rating.
The rating given will describe the type of result obtained and rank from good, fair and poor. After getting a doctor’s evaluation, determine if the score is correct. This will prevent insurance companies from settling with lesser payments than what you ought to receive.
Can a hip replacement operation qualify as a “catastrophic” designation?
Permanent injury can lead to life-crippling disabilities and even employment loss. Without means, coping with a newfound disability can be disconcerting. Depending on the severity of the hip injury, you can qualify for a catastrophic compensation claim.
This enables injured workers who have experienced severe damage to receive lifelong medical support, weekly income and rehabilitation. More so, they are eligible for the following services, according to the severity of the injury:
- Job placement assistance
- Vocational analysis
- Career counseling
- Retraining tuition payments
- CV/Resume writing
- Job modifications and accommodation
Furthermore, Georgia law states employees with catastrophic injury to receive the above services freely.
Securing adequate workers’ comp for a hip injury can be a daunting process. With professional Georgia attorneys, you can receive the compensation you deserve.