Health insurance has made the process of seeking medical care much more complicated for many people, even if it does streamline the process of funding or paying for treatment. If you don’t currently have a health insurance plan or if you recently changed it, you may not currently have a primary care physician.
Your lack of a primary care physician could present some complications if you get hurt in a car accident or due to someone else’s negligence. Ideally, those requiring extensive care will already have a pre-existing relationship with a physician whom they trust and who is familiar with their medical history.
However, just because you don’t currently have a physician who manages your care doesn’t mean you can’t bring a successful personal injury claim and undergo medical treatments to resolve your issues.
What does a primary care physician do?
If you don’t understand the role of a primary care physician, you might not understand why they are important for those potentially needing ongoing medical care. A primary care physician provides guidance and education through annual physicals and routine checkups, which allow them to track the health of the patients that they see.
Your primary care physician also helps connect you with other services and health care providers, ranging from rehabilitation facilities and physical therapists to surgeons and cardiologists. Most health care insurance plans require a referral from a primary care physician in order to cover treatment with a specialist.
Beyond that, the primary care physician can review the medical care a patient gets from a variety of different specialists, coordinate with multiple other doctors and ensure that the treatment and plan for the patient reflect the best medical practices possible given the diagnosis or symptoms.
Following medical recommendations is an important part of an injury claim
When an individual brings a personal injury claim against another person or a company, the basis of the claim stems from the damage or harm caused by the actions or inaction of that person. Those filing such claims need to be able to establish to the courts that they have done everything in their power to mitigate or control the negative consequences they have experienced after an accident.
Properly following through with medical recommendations, whether your physician sent you to physical therapy or suggested a new medication, is an important part of bringing a successful personal injury claim. Failing to follow the instructions of a physician could provide a defense against the claim and result in the courts viewing you as partially or fully responsible for the severity of your injury and the symptoms you experienced.
Thankfully, for those who do not have a primary care physician, it is always possible to create that relationship after an injury. In the event that you do not agree with the recommendations of the physician managing your care, you do also have the right to request a second opinion.