Arizona Governor’s 4/14/2020 Executive Order regarding WC treatment and IME’s

Arizona Governor Doug Ducey recently signed an executive order that addresses changes relevant to medical treatment and IME’s for workers’ compensation matters, in relation to ongoing concerns regarding COVID-19. As you know, Governor Ducey has implemented a “stay at home” order in our state, which applies until April 30, 2020. So long as the stay-at-home order is in place, there are two important points that our firm wants our clients to be aware of:

1) Telemedicine is recognized as a valid means for procuring medical treatment and shall be covered by workers’ compensation carriers and self-insured employers as though the visits are in-person evaluations with a healthcare provider; and

2) Workers’ compensation carriers and self-insured employers shall not require an injured worker to submit to an in-person independent medical examination and shall not suspend the injured worker’s benefits if he/she refuses to submit to an in-person medical examination.

Notably, many healthcare providers and independent medical examiners are amenable to conducting telemedicine visits in lieu of in-person examinations. We encourage you to coordinate with the providers, injured workers/their attorneys, and/or IME companies to arrange for telemedicine visits where available and appropriate. Alternatively, we encourage you to consider rescheduling in-person examinations to a later date if the stay-at-home order remains in place.
Our attorneys and staff are assisting with making alternative arrangements for IME’s that have already been scheduled through mid-May and would be happy to provide assistance or guidance to you if you have any questions about the foregoing.

For your reference, here is a link Governor Ducey’s April 14, 2020 Executive Order, as it contains additional provisions that may be applicable to your claims.

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *