Dealing with the Stress of a Workplace Injury
Post-traumatic stress disorder (PTSD) is often associated with soldiers returning from war and individuals who have suffered from major trauma, such as rape or a horrific accident that left the victim or others disfigured, disabled, or dead. Individuals who suffer from accidents in their workplaces can also suffer from PTSD in the months and years following their accidents, which allows it to be classified as an occupational disease and thus subject to workers’ compensation coverage.
What can make PTSD and other mental disorders more difficult than physical conditions to diagnose and determine an appropriate compensation amount to cover is their lack of physical symptoms. In many cases, it can be difficult for the victim to recognize PTSD symptoms. If he or she does not seek professional help, he or she cannot receive compensation to cover the costs associated with this condition. Educate yourself about PTSD and its symptoms so you can recognize it in yourself or a loved one.
Symptoms of PTSD
Symptoms of PTSD include the following:
- Flashbacks to the traumatic event;
- Emotional detachment from people and things around the victim
- Constant anxiety;
- Thoughts of suicide or self-harm;
- Panic attacks and nightmares
Qualifying for PTSD-related Coverage Through Workers’ Compensation
It is important that you discuss your PTSD and any other mental health problems you experience after your accident with both your employer and your doctor. Although mental health issues can be as destructive as physical injuries, they are often not treated the same way. Give your PTSD the gravity it deserves by treating it exactly the same way as your physical injury: with documentation of your experience and help from a licensed professional. If you are prescribed medication for your PTSD, keep documentation of its cost to submit as part of your workers’ compensation claim.
To qualify for workers’ compensation coverage for your lost wages and medical bills related to PTSD, you need to prove that your PTSD is either related to a traumatic experience that occurred at work or caused by an event at work that triggered a flashback to trauma that occurred elsewhere. The former is often much easier to prove, but a skilled workers’ compensation attorney can help you prove that the PTSD you suffer following a triggering workplace event caused you to suffer significant financial losses.
Examples of workplace trauma that can cause PTSD include watching a colleague die in the line of duty as a police officer or a firefighter, facing an armed robbery or hostage situation in a retail environment, and facing the threat of a bombing or shooting at work.
Work with a New York Workers’ Compensation Lawyer
If you are suffering from PTSD after being injured in a workplace accident, do not suffer financially as well. Work with an experienced New York workers’ compensation attorney to seek the financial aid you need to work through this debilitating condition. The attorneys at the Robert A. Koenigsberg Law Office are equipped to help you pursue your workers’ compensation claim by providing you with results-oriented, compassionate legal advice and representation.