Academy of Chiropractic Personal Injury & Primary Spine Care Program
Quickie Consult 264
"Typed vs. Non-Typed Reports: Who Gets What"
I have been repeatedly asked about sending reports to carriers and lawyers, specifically the initial evaluation report and what to send. The answer is clear and simple. IDNGARA about the carriers and a handwritten document or check-off form, as long as it is complete, can be sent to the carriers. The form that I created and is available online is a very complete form that has passed literally 100's of insurance and regulatory audits as compliant and complete for a "5" level evaluation. You need to ensure that the one you use measures up to that.
DO NOT TRUST EMR companies as they all have an agenda to sell you their products and although some are great, others are...well, less than great and leave you exposed and holding the proverbial "bag" if you are deemed deficient in an audit. If you don't believe me, read the small print in your purchase agreement with them.
Here is the rule of thumb: Everything a lawyer sees MUST be typed formally. Everything that is sent to the carriers, who cares as long as it is complete and sent the cheapest way? I started sending to the carriers my handwritten reports, but at the end of the day dictated all of my reports and had 100% of them in typed format. For me, it was more efficient, saved time and henceforth, money, to do it that way.
If you want a lawyer to consider you an expert, you have to look the part on paper. I have never seen a spine surgeon, neurosurgeon or neurologist's report handwritten. You have to get the lawyer to know that you work at that level because they have had a career of seeing chiropractors' "junior high school level" paperwork called evaluation reports and narratives. Like it or not, the last 20 years and 55,000 PI lawyers I have lectured to have certified that as a profession, our work on paper has been far inferior to our medical specialist counterparts. You have to change their perception and it starts with quality documentation that is professional at every level.