Worker satisfies obligation to produce records by signing HIPPA release form
New York City Department of Environmental, 113 NYWCLR 12 (N.Y.W.C.B., Full Board 2013).
The New York Workers' Compensation Board rescinded the directive of the worker to produce the medical records of a treating doctor.
What it means: In New York, a worker's obligation with respect to the production of prior medical records is satisfied when he provides the employer with a signed HIPPA release form. Thereafter, it is the responsibility of the employer to secure the desired records.
A worker claimed that he suffered a work-related back injury as a result of repetitive stress due to trauma that he was subjected to over a period of time. His treating physician noted a history of prior back treatment. The worker provided the employer with a HIPPA release for all prior treatment to the back. His previous doctor did not comply with the carrier's request for release of his records. The workers' compensation law judge ordered the worker to produce his medical records. The board rescinded the directive. The worker's obligation with respect to the production of prior medical records was satisfied when he provided the employer with the signed HIPPA release form. Thereafter, it was the responsibility of the employer to secure the desired records.
Even if the employer properly subpoenaed the doctor's records, without success, it was not the burden of the worker to provide the carrier with those records. The board said that since the doctor testified and was subjected to cross-examination by the employer, the case should be sent back to the workers' compensation law judge for further adjudication.
Read more at the WorkersComp Forum homepage.
June 17, 2013
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