Many workers swear by their chiropractors, but a lack of oversight in the system means that too few injured workers see them for treatment. Those who do see them receive care that reduces claim costs, including temporary disability, according to research.
Chiropractors are a key component of the medical management team. They often work closely with physicians, nurses, physical therapists, and other specialists.
Chiropractic services for state workers provide natural and non-drug approaches to pain relief. Their spinal manipulations remove pressure on nerves, allowing unimpeded communication between the body and the brain. This helps reduce inflammation, lower pain levels, and speed up healing.
The pain relief you receive through a chiropractor’s treatment plan can help improve your focus and productivity at work. This is especially true if your pain is due to spinal misalignments. Chiropractors can identify and fix the problem by creating a personalized treatment plan.
Inflammation is a natural process your body uses to protect itself from injury, disease, and infection. But long-term inflammation is harmful, increasing your risk of illness and reducing the effectiveness of your immune system. Chiropractic care can reduce chronic inflammation and decrease your dependence on drugs to manage pain.
Chiropractors use a drug-free, hands-on approach to health care, including patient examination, diagnosis, and treatment. They focus on the spine, muscles, joints, and nervous system to promote health, prevent disease and relieve pain.
Some studies show that workers’ compensation patients treated by chiropractors have shorter disability time and lower costs than those who receive medical treatment. This is due to chiropractic adjustments that find the source of the pain and relieve pressure on nerves that send painful signals or contract muscles. They also help you heal more quickly. This reduces your overall cost of treatment and the need for medication.
Chiropractic care can help increase flexibility in patients with back pain. Typically, chiropractors perform spinal manipulation to relieve joint stiffness and reduce nerve pressure. Additionally, chiropractors often use other therapies to boost flexibility, such as electrical muscle stimulation and traction.
Unlike non-workers who pay copays and meet medical plan deductibles, workers’ comp patients have no financial or logistical barriers to accessing chiropractic treatment. As a result, patients with workplace injuries are more likely to receive the most optimal care.
While many workers’ comp patients swear by chiropractors, it needs to be clarified whether the service pays for itself. A recent study by WCRI compared costs and temporary disability duration of low back pain claims in which chiropractors are the exclusive providers with those of non-chiropractic care. The results indicate that chiropractic is cost-effective and leads to shorter periods of disability.
Chiropractic services are known to promote healing in the body in some ways. They can increase flexibility, improve mobility, boost the immune system, decrease fatigue, and help retrain the body to function properly.
These services are beneficial to the health of employees and employers alike. They can reduce worker’s compensation claims, lower insurance premiums, and decrease the amount of time off work due to back injuries.
A WCRI study found that, on average, costs per claim were reduced by 35%, and the duration of temporary disability was 26% shorter in cases where chiropractors provided treatment. However, some states still need to utilize these services. This is likely due to a lack of awareness, as some patients need to be made aware that their workers’ compensation policies will cover these treatments. Other reasons may include a misunderstanding of the benefits and a misguided view of the cost-effectiveness of chiropractic care. Changing these perceptions could be the first step toward improved utilization of chiropractic services in workers’ comp claims.