If you suffered a catastrophic injury, you may face a lengthy recovery process and the prospect of long-term or permanent disability. Medical treatment options for catastrophic injuries often combine surgery, rehabilitation, prescription drugs, and mental health support.
Catastrophic injury care involves heavy medical bills and other out-of-pocket costs. So what type of treatment might you need after an injury, and who is responsible for covering these medical expenses?
What Is a Catastrophic Injury?
After an accident, you might wonder if your injury counts as “catastrophic.” Under California law, a catastrophic injury is an injury that would permanently bar you from any gainful employment. These types of injuries may require months of treatment, cause intense suffering, and change your life forever.
Examples of catastrophic injuries include:
- Severe traumatic brain injury
- Spinal cord injury
- Limb amputations
- Severe burns
- Loss of vision or hearing
- Extensive damage to internal organs
Treatment Plans for Catastrophic Injuries
Medical treatment options for catastrophic injuries often involve two stages: emergency treatment and long-term treatment. Emergency treatment typically seeks to save the victim’s life and mitigate acute injuries, while a long-term rehabilitation process aims to improve the survivor’s health, function, and quality of life. Let’s review several medical care possibilities that may be necessary after a catastrophic injury.
Depending on your specific injury, you may need to undergo surgery and other types of emergency treatment after your accident. Emergency brain and head surgeries, limb amputations, internal injury surgeries, and tissue repair are common types of surgical interventions after catastrophic injuries. You may also need plastic surgery or skin grafts to address severe burns, scarring, and disfigurement.
You may need prescription medication to alleviate pain or alleviate post-injury symptoms. For example, if you suffered a traumatic brain injury, your doctor may prescribe anti-seizure drugs. You may also require anti-inflammatory drugs to promote recovery or antibiotics to combat a secondary infection.
Once your condition stabilizes, you may begin the long, hard work of physical therapy to aid your recovery. A physiotherapist will assess your condition and provide a personalized care plan.
Consistent physical therapy sessions can improve mobility, coordination, balance, and other abilities that may have suffered because of your injury. Physical therapy can strengthen your muscles and ligaments, prevent various chronic conditions, and lower other medical treatment costs over time.
Mental Health Care
Mental health issues add to the distress of catastrophic accident victims. Anxiety, depression, PTSD, and mental trauma are common among survivors. You may also experience traumatic flashbacks, feelings of intense anger and frustration, and a process of grief over your losses.
As a catastrophic injury survivor, you may have several treatment options, including cognitive behavioral therapy, individual counseling sessions, and group therapy. Antidepressants and mood stabilizers may also help you cope with the challenging period of recovering after a severe injury.
Chronic Pain Management
After a catastrophic injury, you may still deal with chronic pain even after you reach a maximum level of recovery. Chronic pain management may include various options, from exercises and anti-inflammatory diets to medical cannabis.
Along with medical treatment options for catastrophic injuries, you will also need to adjust your lifestyle to your present health conditions. This may involve learning to use a wheelchair or function with the help of prosthetics, finding solutions for daily chores and errands, or equipping your home to make it more accessible.
You may also weigh options for the future, whether it’s a line of work that accommodates your disability or other meaningful activities that help you rebuild your life. Family and friends can provide an invaluable support system to help you through this challenging time.
Who Is Responsible for Covering Your Medical Costs?
Nearly all medical treatment options for catastrophic injuries involve high and sometimes unpredictable costs. Who is responsible for reimbursing you for out-of-pocket medical expenses?
You could be eligible for medical care coverage from:
- The person(s) directly responsible for your accident, like the speeding driver who rear-ended your car or the store owner who failed to remove a tripping hazard from their premises.
- Your employer’s workers’ compensation insurance provider, if your accident happened in the workplace or while handling work-related tasks.
- Your personal injury protection or health insurance, if your accident didn’t involve someone else’s negligence or the liable party’s maximum insurance coverage isn’t enough to pay for your medical costs.
- Medi-Cal, if you qualify for benefits based on your disability status, income, and other criteria.
An Orange County catastrophic injury attorney can let you know who may be responsible for covering your medical costs and what other damages, like lost income and pain and suffering, your catastrophic injury settlement may include.
Why You Need Dedicated Legal Representation After a Catastrophic Injury
Following a catastrophic injury, you and your family may experience extreme stress. In addition to your health condition, you may deal with uncertain prospects, a disrupted life, and high upfront costs. Insurance companies may take advantage of your vulnerable situation and rush you into a settlement that falls short of covering all your damages.
Working with an experienced local catastrophic injury lawyer will help protect your rights and improve your chances of winning a settlement that reflects the true worth of your claim. A skilled personal injury attorney can:
- Assess your case and let you know who may be liable for damages
- Help you understand the full value of your claim, including lifelong injury-related costs and losses you may expect
- Present compelling evidence to support your claim
- Fight on your behalf for the highest possible settlement
- Advise you on additional legal options, like a third-party claim or a personal injury lawsuit
Khalil Law Group: End-to-End Legal Services for Your Catastrophic Injury Claim in Orange County, CA
Medical treatment options for catastrophic injuries often include extensive surgery, a lengthy rehabilitation period, and ongoing management of long-term or permanent damage. We at Khalil Law Group are here to fight on your behalf so you can focus on recovery.
For a free consultation with a catastrophic injury attorney in Newport Beach, CA, call (714) 617-7870 or complete our online form.