As Florida’s stay-at-home order is still in effect, most Floridians are anxious about going outside, even for an essential activity like seeking medical attention or undergoing treatment. Many are avoiding hospitals at all costs because they fear that they might become infected with COVID-19.
But can you actually stop or postpone your medical treatment due to the fear of contracting the virus if you were injured during or before the coronavirus pandemic? Not at all. In fact, doing so may negatively affect your personal injury case in Florida.
Stopping or Postponing Your Personal Injury Treatment During the Pandemic
As many hospitals in Lakeland, Winter Haven, and other parts of Florida continue treating coronavirus patients, there is an increased risk of becoming infected while visiting one of those hospitals. However, the rational fear of infection should not prevent you from receiving medical treatment during these trying times.
If you were injured in an auto crash or another accident during or prior to the coronavirus crisis, it is critical to stay on track with your medical treatment and follow your doctor’s orders. Stopping or delaying your treatment could affect your chances of successful recovery or aggravate your medical condition.
While it might seem unsafe to visit a hospital to continue or start your medical treatment during these unprecedented times, doing so is essential to maximize your financial compensation in the long run.
Tips on Visiting Hospitals During the COVID-19 Pandemic
Here are a few safety tips to consider before going to a hospital for an unrelated procedure to minimize the risk of coronavirus exposure:
- Take the precautions outlined in the CDC’s “How to Protect Yourself” guide.
- Wash your hands thoroughly and carry a disinfectant.
- Avoid touching your face (doing so may expose you to the bacteria and germs that can spread coronavirus).
- Practice social distancing (maintain at least 6 feet from persons that appear ill, and 3 feet from others).
- Avoid having any physical contact with other people in and around the hospital. Replace traditional handshakes with elbow bumps or waves.
- Do not touch hard surfaces with your hands. Instead, use tissues or paper towels to open doors. When touching any surface, such as a door handle, wash your hands with soap or disinfect them with a sanitizer as soon as possible.
To summarize, you should go to a hospital in order to prove the extent of your injuries and recover damages but do so while following the above-mentioned safety tips. Given the financial uncertainty due to the pandemic, it may be tempting to accept a settlement offer. However, doing so is not advised as many insurers take advantage of the uncertainty surrounding the pandemic and offer lowball settlements.
Instead, talk to a Lakeland personal injury attorney to handle your case during the coronavirus pandemic and evaluate how much your case is worth. Contact The Turnbull Firm for a case evaluation. Call at 863-324-3500 to get a consultation.