I’m not a psychic. I can’t predict the future. If I had those skills I’d be living in Vegas.
What I have done, eight times by my count, is guess the name of the IME doctor who is completely screwing over a seriously injured worker with a report that says they are fine even though their MRI and symptoms say otherwise. This has all happened over the last three months.
How am I able to guess this doctor? Well, these cases had a few things in common. They were all back or neck injuries. They were all in the Chicago area. They all had recommendations for surgery after physical therapy and cortisone injections failed. It’s pretty standard practice to try this conservative therapy first and then go for surgery if it doesn’t work.
I’ll tell you the name of the doctor if you ask me, but it’s an orthopedic doctor in the northern suburbs who is a go to guy for insurance companies. Now I’m not saying that he doesn’t actually believe the things he writes in his reports. Maybe he does just like maybe the Bulls are going to win the NBA championship this year.
Or maybe it’s that he’s willing to say things that no other surgeons would say or at least not many of them who do IME’s. He’s willing to say what the insurance company, who pays him big bucks, want him to say. Does he do that every time? No, but he does that enough that it gives them ammunition to fight a case even when no reasonable person would agree with this doctor.
From the standpoint of the insurance company, a neck or back surgery is very expensive. If they can frustrate you in to not having the surgery at all or getting your group insurance to pay for it, they save a lot of money. It’s shady work, but insurance companies aren’t in business for morals, they are in it for money. When they don’t pay your medical bills they save/make money.
The good news is that the Arbitrators at the Illinois Workers’ Compensation Commission know that this guy is a hired gun too. They see him on many of their cases that go to trial. That doesn’t mean that you don’t need a credible doctor in your corner who states that your injuries are work related and they need to also credibly lay out why you need the medical treatment that you need.
So the bad news is that this hack of a doctor – he’s actually got a good reputation as a treating doctor, just seems to have sold his soul on these IME’s – can delay your medical care. The good news is that if you have a lawyer in your corner who will fight for you and do what is needed to get your case ready for trial, you should win.
If you’d like our help or if you’d like me to guess who your IME doctor is (I’ve got good guesses for carpal tunnel cases too) fill out our form to the right or call us at (312) 346-5578. We help with work injuries everywhere in Illinois.