Medical care for workers in Michigan cheaper than most places

We all know how expensive medical care can be. While we go through large portions of our life as healthy individuals, there comes a time in every person’s life where the cost of medical treatment is no longer an afterthought. While this can come with an unexpected diagnosis or something as simple as aging, workplace injuries are one of the most common causes of surprising medical costs.

Fortunately, Michigan rates as one of the cheapest places for injured workers to obtain medical care following an accident. Even better, the rise in medical benefits paid per claim from 2007 to 2012 was less than half that of other states studied. The typical state studied saw an increase of just over 24.5 percent, while Michigan saw an increase of 11.5 percent. These statistics may have serious consequences for Michigan workers.

As this blog regularly discusses, employees in Michigan are entitled to workers’ compensation benefits for injuries sustained at work. These benefits include compensation for medical expenses and lost wages. While the cost of care may seem irrelevant to many workers who are being reimbursed anyway, it is directly tied to the duration and quality of the care received.

These complicated and intertwined issues have resulted in practices and regulations meant to both save employers money and provide employees with top notch care. Of course, competing goals like this do not always result in optimal outcomes.

In other words, an injured worker may get the short end of the stick. From being denied full medical benefits to being forced back to work too soon, those injured on the job are at risk of being denied full benefits. For injured workers, it may be a good idea to seek advice in order to pursue the full amount of benefits they need.

Source: WTRF7, “Cost of Medical Care for Injured Workers in Michigan was Lower than Most States and Rising Slowly,” Dec. 9, 2014