The ongoing coronavirus pandemic has made essentially everything more difficult than it was before, including seeking medical care after being in an accident. With winter and flu season fast approaching, hospitals are expecting to be at max capacity with the added stress of COVID-19 patients. Heading to the hospital or a medical clinic after an accident could very likely put you in proximity with someone who has the coronavirus or at least symptoms of it. To take care of yourself and your pending personal injury claim, you still need to seek medical treatments after an accident, but you should do so more cautiously than you have in the past.
Four Ways to Get Medical Care & Stay Safe
After an accident, keep these four coronavirus-medical care safety tips in mind:
- Emergencies only: It is crucial that medical clinics and hospitals keep as many beds available as possible for people with moderate to severe COVID-19 symptoms. If you have been in an accident – like a car accident or a slip-and-fall accident – then you should try to determine if your injuries warrant an emergency room visit. Head injuries, severe lacerations, broken bones, paralysis, and other catastrophic injuries should be answered with an ambulance trip to the ER. On the other hand, minor injuries might only call for an urgent care visit or a check-up shortly after the accident scene is cleared up. To be safe, you should allow any emergency medical technicians who show up at the scene of your accident to evaluate your injuries and recommend immediate treatments.
- Telehealth systems: Depending on the severity of your injuries, you might not need to head to urgent care or the doctor’s office at all thanks to telehealth systems. For years, “visiting” the doctor has been possible through teleconferencing apps that allow a medical professional to accurately assess symptoms remotely. During the coronavirus pandemic, the usefulness of telehealth systems has ballooned. If you are not in immediate danger due to your injuries, then you can call your medical provider and inquire about using a telehealth conference instead of an in-person visit.
- Safety precautions: There is a high chance that your doctor will recommend you come into their office for an in-person check-up and diagnosis, though. A face-to-face appointment remains the most reliable way to make an accurate evaluation of a patient’s symptoms. If you do need to plan to see a doctor in-person, do not be shy about asking what sort of virus safety precautions they are taking around the clinic. For example, you will almost certainly be required to wear a mask at all times unless instructed otherwise by your doctor. There will also likely be a separate waiting area for patients with COVID-19 symptoms, as well as a brief diagnostic exam at the entrance to look for patients with high fevers.
- Aftercare: To minimize your risk of coronavirus exposure, you will need to take as few trips to the hospital as possible, which means following your aftercare instructions as closely as you can. You might be instructed to get plenty of bedrest and do some light stretching throughout the day, for example. Don’t forget to also to take any medicines according to your prescription. Following aftercare instructions to the letter will help your recovery process, improve the chances of returning to the hospital for a follow-up, and reduce your liability in a future injury claim. Insurance companies like to blame the extent of a claimant’s injuries on a failure to follow aftercare instructions.
Legal Work Can Be Done Remotely, Too
Don’t forget that the majority of casework for a personal injury client can be done remotely as well. Using emails, teleconferencing, text messages, and more, attorneys can connect with their clients without an in-person meeting, keeping both parties at minimal risk of coronavirus exposure. If you were hurt in an accident that was not your fault, then you should not let the pandemic stop you from exploring your legal options to demand recovery from the liable party. Everything from initial consultations and evidence discovery to courtroom proceedings can mostly be done remotely, so there is no reason to back away from your claim now.
Do you live in Orlando, Florida and need a personal injury attorney? Contact Todd Miner Law®️ to request a free, no-obligation, and remote consultation with our team. We can help start your claim from the safety of your own home.