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What To Do If You’ve Been Injured In A Car Accident
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There are few things as stressful and traumatic as experiencing a car accident. It’s a frightening, disorienting experience, and it can be difficult to remain calm throughout the ordeal. However, it’s vital to maintain a clear head, because your very first actions following the accident are often the most important. Here’s what you need to do if you’ve been injured in an auto accident.
1. Contact law enforcement
Before you even go to the hospital (unless it’s an emergency, of course) you should contact law enforcement. The easiest way to handle this while still ensuring that you receive the medical care you require is to call your local emergency number. Calling 911 will alert both law enforcement professionals and emergency medical personnel that there has been a vehicle collision.
2. Don’t deny medical treatment
While you may feel okay at the moment, that doesn’t mean you haven’t been injured. First, some symptoms may not show up for a few days, but some quick diagnostic tests could still reveal injury. Second, you may only feel fine because you are in shock. A car accident can, unsurprisingly, result in your body releasing massive amounts of adrenaline, which can mask other symptoms of distress. Don’t put too much stock in how you feel right now. Acknowledge that your body has experienced a traumatic event, and get medical attention immediately.
3. Document everything related to the accident and your medical treatment.
This is especially important immediately following the accident and when being treated the first time at the emergency room. Don’t depend entirely on law enforcement or medical personnel to do your documentation for you. While these authorities have your best interests at heart, they are usually not thinking about your personal injury claim, just your health. Good, detailed documentation will make it much easier to receive full reimbursement from your insurance provider.
Detailed documentation can include:
* Keeping receipts for appointments
* Keeping a record of contact information for each doctor or specialist you see
* Keeping a journal or log of your health and well-being daily, including the amount of pain you experience
* Maintaining copies of all correspondence with medical personnel. Keep all emails related to your treatment, and take notes regarding telephone conversations and statements made at appointments
* Track expenses for medications, supplements, special nutritional needs, and travel time
* Take photos of the damage done to your vehicle in the accident
* Keep a log of time missed from work to prove that your injury has had a financial impact
4. Go see a personal injury specialist
While your primary care physician may be a great choice during less stressful times, it’s a better option to turn your care over to a personal injury doctor until your claim is settled. These doctors are well-versed in the legal and financial consequences you are currently struggling with, and they can provide comprehensive support. Personal Injury Doctors also understand what referrals will be covered by your claim, and can manage your care more efficiently.
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