In the case of Jose v. Goodwill Industries and Gallagher Bassett, decided January 23, 2014, the First District Court of Appeals in Florida held that a Goodwill worker who passed out and fell at work was not able to pursue a workers’ compensation case because the claimant failed to produce objective medical findings substantiating an injury resulting from his fall at work. However, the Appellate Court noted that none of the doctors had been asked about the hospital CT scan taken on the date of the claimant’s accident, which revealed a hematoma or some hemorrhage. Neither of the doctors had been asked whether that condition substantiated an objective medical finding substantiating an injury at work.
Pain may serve as the basis of an emergency medical condition if, in the absence of immediate medical attention, the claimant could reasonably be expected to suffer “serious dysfunction of any bodily organ or part.” In the case of Manuel Cespedes v. Yellow Transportation, the First District Court of Appeal decided on November 26, 2013, that in this case the claimant had a compensable injury on March 20, 2006 and was MMI’d by Dr. Chris Brown with a 6% impairment for an L5-S1 disk herniation. Thereafter, he treated intermittently with Dr. Brown. On March 19, 2011, he was admitted to Kendall Regional Medical Center under the care of Dr. Acebal, Claimant was found to have a massive herniated disk at L5-S1, severely compressing the nerve roots and Dr. Acebal did immediate surgery at L5-S1. Prior to surgery Dr. Acebal offered to transfer the Claimant’s surgery to Dr. Brown because he needed immediate surgery. Dr. Brown told Dr. Acebal to do the surgery. On March 22 Dr. Acebal performed surgery and the Employer/Carrier denied any further medical care. The Claimant tended to offer into evidence the opinion of Dr. Acebal, but the Employer/Carrier objected. The JCC erroneously sustained that objection. This case was eventually reversed with the Employer/Carrier being ordered to pay for the surgery. Continue reading →