January 28, 2014

Up Hill Battle to Return to Work

A new experience has begun.  I have been trying to return to work since July 2013.  I'm having no success.  Please share your stories with returning to work after/with an injury/illness/condition.

I was assigned a Rehabilitation Consultant (RC) by my long-term income protection provider (disability insurance) back in July.  She met with me in person on July 4th.  This was her initial assessment of me.  She asked me questions about what my restriction/limitations were.  Whether I could return to my same job and what accommodations I may need.  Do need.  She wrote a report, made a plan and what came of that was my employer requesting that my medical information be more specific.  The RC designed a questionnaire she called it for my doctor and sent it directly to him.  Once this completed questionnaire was provided to my employer on Sep 11th, it took until Nov 26, for my employer to advise the RC that they wanted a Independent Medical Exam (IME).

I've done my research and IMEs are not a good thing for employees.  Here's how an IME works.  Firstly, to say the exam is "independent" is a joke.  The choice of doctor to carryout this IME is no choice at all, the medical practitioner is dictated to you.  You are not the client.  Your employer is the doctor's client.  So, in that case any report that is done by this doctor is going to be written in favour of whatever your employer is looking for the report to indicate for them.  These reports are very costly; upwards of $4000 that your employer is paying.  The employee does not get a draft of the report prior to your employer because you are not the client.  So if there are any inaccuracies or items that you do not agree with, tough luck.  Your employer has already absorbed what the report says.  What if there are contradictions with what your own doctor has provided.  What opinion do you think the employer is going to rely on?  Oh yes, don't kid yourself.  The report that they paid thousands of dollars for.

So, yes I'm freaking out!  I simply require a type of chair that has a feature to recline and elevate my legs, with a laptop table to work.
Has your employer ever put you through extreme measures when you felt it unnecessary?  Have you ever fought for your Human Rights?  I feel punished for having a disability.  I never asked for this life, but you must fight for a life to have!


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The Keyhole to My Mind's Closet

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