Broadlands and Ashburn area lawyer Doug Landau was recently asked by an injured worker, "If my workers comp injury is made worse by physical therapy or medical care, is that also covered by the workers comp insurance company ?" Landau notes that if the initial on the job accident is "compensable" and covered under an Award by the Virginia Workers Compensation Commission ("VWCC")
, then injuries and aggravations of that underlying condition may also be covered under the Workers Compensation Act. When a disabled worker’s condition is made worse by medical care or a new injury occurs during therapy, a claim for a "compensable consequence" can be made. Professor Larson’s text "Workmen’s Compensation," at section 13.20 discusses "Subsequent aggravation of original injury" discusses this doctrine of "compensable consequences." The ABRAMS LANDAU law firm has successfully tried a number of these "subsequent injury" cases where a new medical problem arises after an initial on the job injury.
The Larson book on Workers Compensation, discusses "Aggravation by treatment" in Section 13.21, stating:
"It is now uniformly held that aggravation of the primary injury by medical or surgical treatment is compensable."
This includes corrective or exploratory surgery, as well as physical and occupational therapy accidents. In other words, if an injured worker gets an injection for her treatment, and an infection develops that disables her further, the treatment for that infectious process AND THE ADDITIONAL TIME OFF FROM WORK are both usually covered under the doctrine of "Compensable Consequences." Likewise, if disabled construction worker with a broken right leg falls during therapy, and breaks his left leg, that too should be covered by the Workers Compensation insurance company. If you or someone you know has been injured in an on the job accident, and have been re-injured during medical care, therapy or due to the original workplace disability, please e-mail us at ABRAMS LANDAU, Ltd., or call 703-796-9555 today.