An independent medical examination (IME) occurs when a physician who has not previously been involved in a person’s care examines an individual. There is no doctor-patient relationship. IME’s are conducted to determine the cause, extent and medical treatment of a work-related or other injury where liability is at issue; whether an individual has reached maximum benefit from treatment; and whether any permanent impairment remains after treatment.
An IME may be performed at the request of an employer or an insurance carrier to obtain an independent opinion of the clinical status of the individual. The IME not only consists of the actual history and physical but a detailed review of medical records. This unfortunately is often times a neglected step as the review of medical records can take several hours of a physician’s time. However, It is essential that a comprehensive medical record review be completed to ensure that appropriate treatment has been authorized.
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