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ADVISORY 2003-20

SUBJECT: Status of Doctors Providing Health Care to Old Law Claimants

The claims of employees whose work-related injuries occurred prior to January 1, 1991 are administered by the law and rules in effect prior to January 1, 1991 (commonly referred to as "Old Law"). Doctors who provide health care to injured employees with dates of injury prior to January 1, 1991 are not subject to 408.022, which applies only to "New Law" claims, and which provides, in part, that "Except in an emergency, the commission shall require an employee to receive medical treatment from a doctor chosen from a list of doctors approved by the commission."

Any licensed doctor may treat or evaluate the health care of a claimant whose injury occurred prior to January 1, 1991. Such a doctor should be reimbursed for medically necessary and reasonable health care rendered to these claimants. The requirements, effective September 1, 2003, regarding training, registration, and financial disclosure applicable to doctors on the Approved Doctor List do not apply to a doctor who provides health care solely to Old Law claimants.

Signed on this 7th day of November, 2003

Richard F. Reynolds, Executive Director

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