How to Prepare for a Medical Examination

In this video, Associate Lisa Robertson talks about medical examinations and how you can prepare for them.


Medical Examinations and How You Can Prepare For Them

Hi, my name is Lisa Robertson, and I’m a compensation lawyer here at Bourke Legal. Today, I’m going to talk to you a little about medical examinations and how you can prepare for them.

If you have a personal injury and you’ve made a claim for compensation, you’re likely to undergo a medical examination at some time during the course of your claim.

Medical examinations can either be made on your behalf, on behalf of an insurer, or on behalf of a tribunal, such as the Personal Injury Commission in New South Wales.

Medical examinations are conducted by specialist medical doctors. They are not there to provide treatment to you. They are simply there to provide an opinion on how to manage your claim.

There are a number of reasons why you may have a medical examination. The first is to figure out the extent of your injury and how it happened. The second might be to determine your work capacity and whether you’re fit for your pre-injury employment or alternative employment.

The third reason may be to ascertain whether or not a specific treatment is reasonably necessary as a direct result of your injury, and lastly, a medical examination may be conducted to determine your level of whole-person impairment, whether this is because you need to determine the amount of compensation you are to be paid or to determine a threshold issue.

So, how do you prepare for a medical examination? Well, the first thing you really need to do is to accept the appointment as soon as it’s made for you. Specialist medical examiners have long waiting periods for their appointments, and you don’t want delay to compromise your compensation claim.

Also, if you have any special requirements such as disability or you need an interpreter, you need to let the organiser know as soon as possible so that they can make the arrangements for the appointment. The other thing you need to consider is how you’re going to get to the appointment.

If you can’t afford to pay to travel to the appointment and get reimbursed at a later date, you need to speak to the insurer and ask if they can prepay your reasonable travel, accommodation, and meal expenses. When you actually get to the appointment, you should arrive a little bit early so that you can complete any paperwork that’s necessary.

You should also have clear in your mind before you see the medical examiner how your injury happened, what the effects of your injury have been on your body and your psychological condition, and how that has affected your day-to-day living activities.

If you’re bringing a support person with you, please talk to the receptionist before you take your support person in to see the medical examiner. Medical examiners can refuse to admit a support person, so you need to ask before you start your appointment.

A couple of extra tips for physical examinations. Firstly, you should take any radiographic reports you have with you. This includes MRI scans, CT scans, X-rays, and ultrasound reports.

This will help the medical examiner with their examination, they may not have seen this clinical information before. You should also wear comfortable shoes and clothing. A medical examiner will examine your range of motion and determine your physical capabilities.

A couple of extra tips for psychological assessments. If you’re having a psychological assessment, make sure you have clear in your mind how your psychological injury has affected you.

It may have affected your activities of daily living, your relationships, your cognitive abilities, and also your activities of daily living. Your solicitor will help you with the assessment criteria and tell you what the medical examiner will want to know.

These days, most psychiatric examinations take place via telehealth. If you have a telehealth examination, you will need a reliable internet connection. You will also need a laptop or tablet with a microphone and webcam.

Just remember, medical examiners don’t know you, your family, or your full clinical history. You’ll probably only see them once in your entire life. If you’re unhappy with the findings of a medical examiner, you need to consult your solicitor immediately as it may have an effect on your compensation rights.

I hope this video has been instructive, and I wish you well and good luck.