Home health aides and nurses across the country face higher rates of occupational injury than most Americans. These jobs require you to be on your feet all day, potentially performing strenuous tasks like lifting or supporting another person. Overexertion is the leading cause of injury in these highly active professions.
However, most people do not realize that worker’s compensation benefits can help alleviate the medical costs of pre-existing injuries when work restrains them. This is especially common in New York’s harsh winter months, when the change in the temperature can make previous injuries flare up at higher risk of new injury. If your home health duties re-injure your bad back or bum knee, you should keep some important things in mind.
Aggravation of previous injury
The most important factor in a worker’s compensation case is proving that the injury happened due to work related duties. In the case of a previous condition, your claim may depend on whether you can show that job-required tasks significantly aggravated your injury. Items that may help your case include:
- Medical records showing the condition of your injury at multiple doctor visits before and after re-injury
- Written accounts, including dates and times, of any incidents that exacerbated your injury on the job
- Witness testimony from any co-workers who saw the aggravating incident(s)
Consulting with an attorney sooner rather gives you a better chance of gathering the necessary evidence for your case.
With a previously existing injury, you may have experience managing your symptoms so that you do not miss multiple days of work. Worker’s compensation benefits can still apply even if you did not miss any days of work. In those cases, the compensation would provide for medical benefits rather than cash benefits. This benefit helps offset the medical costs that your work-related injury requires.
Worker’s compensation claims related to an existing condition are some of the most likely to get denied. Luckily, you do not have to face this confusing system on your own. An attorney can help you navigate the system so that the appropriate facts make an impact at your hearing.