How to: New Chiropractic Personal Injury/Automobile Accident Patients


New Chiropractic Personal Injury Patients

Personal Injury usually involves one of these three accident scenarios:

  • Automobile Crash
  • Accidents in a home other than the patients home
  • Accidents on a business site not related to work (on the job injury is Workers Compensation)

Payment for personal injury patients may come from many sources in addition to traditional health insurance or Workers Compensation:

  • Fault-based insurance, i.e. liability, or uninsured motorist coverage(will generally increase insured’s premiums)
  • No-fault coverages, i.e. medical payments benefits, personal injury protection (generally will not affect premiums
  • Attorneys who represent the chiropractic patients typically with fault based insurance.  –  A letter of protection will be requested from the attorney that guarantees we will be paid for our services.  This is needed because we generally will not bill to protect the patients case.
  • Health Insurance/HMO/PPO etc if the above are limited or exhausted
  • Patient payments including cash, HSA’s and medical cafeteria plans

New Personal Injury Patients

Photo used under Creative Commons from Patrik Axelsson

Because there are so many people besides the personal injury patient involved, it is important to obtain the appropriate information:

  • Completion of accident information by the patient
  • Police Reports, Accident Exchange of Information Forms and/or courtesy slips
  • Copy of patients registration, automobile insurance card, and or copy of the insurance declaration page.
  • For business insurance, the place of business should be called to inquire as to who their insurance carrier is.  Then the insurance carrier should be called to verify coverage.  Claims adjusters will typically need the insured’s name, policy number, date of the accident/loss, personal injury claim number assigned to the case, the name and address of the adjuster, and the preferred method of billing.

For coding and billing in these cases it is also important to specify E-codes in the diagnoses section to specifiy the external cause of the injury.

For legal cases, the patients attorney should be consulted and a letter of protection/lien should be obtained.  Our business attorney may be contacted to ensure that it is a well drafted assignment & lien.

When we are the first physicians seen in an accident case, it is important to document every aspect of the case, contusions, cuts, scrapes, etc in addition to our typically chiropractic workup.

This is not intended to be legal advice and is only provided as an example of what our office policies and procedures are like.  Please check the laws in your state before implementing any changes to your policies and procedures.

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