Officer's medical records support earlier diagnosis, make claim untimely
Case name: Wabno v. City of Derby, No. AC 30399 (Conn. App. Ct. 01/24/12).
Ruling: The Connecticut Appellate Court held that an officer's claim for benefits for hypertension was untimely filed.
What it means: In Connecticut, a worker has one year to file a claim for hypertension. Notations in a worker's medical records that he had a history of hypertension and the fact that he was prescribed antihypertensive medications show that the worker had knowledge that he suffered from hypertension.
Summary: A police officer had a history of high blood pressure readings that were noted in his medical records. His medical records also included notations of hypertension and prescriptions for antihypertensive medications. Six years after the first notation of antihypertensive medication, he underwent a nuclear stress test. The cardiologist concluded that he suffered from mild hypertension and assigned him a 9 percent permanent partial disability rating. The officer sought benefits. The Connecticut Appellate Court held that the officer's claim was untimely.
Connecticut law requires workers to file a claim for hypertension within one year when a worker is informed by a medical professional that he was diagnosed with hypertension. The officer argued that the limitations period did not begin to run until he was informed that he had hypertension at his stress test. The court disagreed, stating that a medical professional is not required to use the term "hypertension" to communicate the diagnosis to a worker. Here, the officer's medical records contained hypertensive notations and prescriptions for antihypertensive medications.
The officer also consistently recorded elevated blood pressure readings in the years leading up to the stress test. The court found it significant that one doctor noted that he discussed his concerns with the officer.
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March 1, 2012
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