You may have heard your physician mention maximum medical improvement (MMI). In workers’ compensation, MMI means that your physician believes you have recovered as much as you are going to. This doesn’t mean you shouldn’t keep treating, rather it means that your physician no longer expects improvement. However, if you are in pain we recommend that you keep treating. Continuing to treat also keeps the carrier aware that you do need additional medical care related to your injury. Ongoing treatment at least a few times a year helps keep your case active with the carrier and with your physician.
Once you reach MMI, your physicians may discharge you to return “PRN”, which is treatment as needed. You can (and should) still make an appointment to return to your physician periodically.
Once you reach MMI, if you have an injury to an extremity (leg, arm, hand, fingers, etc.) the question of whether there is permanent impairment should arise. If you have reduced range of motion or reduced strength due to your workers’ compensation injury, there may well be permanent impairment. A permanent impairment award is a way to get more money to you, without settling or closing your case. If you are at MMI and believe you have a permanent impairment, please contact us for additional assistance.