Obese People at Higher Risk for Health Complications, Workers Compensation Claims

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According to an article in USA Today, “Many overweight and obese patients seen in hospital emergency departments don’t believe their weight poses a risk to their health, and many say doctors have never told them otherwise, a new study finds.” This finding is shocking and alarming, particularly in a state where 26.6 percent of the general population are considered obese. This statistic is similar throughout the country.

Chicago workers compensation attorneys also know that not only does being overweight put individuals at greater risk for health complications but also for work injuries and workers compensation claims.

A Duke University Medical Center study “observed “dramatic” workers’ compensation-related differences between people with normal weight or body mass index (BMI)- a calculation that assesses weight relative to height- and those in the obesity BMI range,” according to the Insurance Journal. Morbidly obese workers also:

– Had 5.4 times the healthcare costs of a worker with a normal BMI
– Reported 8x as many lost days of work as non-obese workers
– Filed 45 percent more claims than normal BMI workers
– Filed almost 8x more indemnity claims as non-obese workers

Subsequently, many industry professionals – like the National Council on Compensation Insurance (NCCI) and our Chicago workers compensation attorneys – have concerns regarding the obesity epidemic. “Claims involving obesity are seen to have “markedly higher” indemnity and medical costs,” according to the NCCI. Obesity may reduce productivity and increase high cholesterol, hypertension and the rate of impaired activity associated with type 2 diabetes and impact mortality rates.

It is of the utmost importance to maintain healthy and active lifestyle to avoid obesity and obesity-related complications. Obese workers are still entitled to rights under the Illinois Workers Compensation Act or similar workers compensation legislation in each state. If you have suffered a work injury – regardless of whether or not you are obese – you could be eligible for workers compensation benefits.

Contact an experienced Chicago workers compensation lawyer to assit you in filing a workers compensation claim. It is a complicated legal process, and some employers and insurance companies do not always act in the best interest of their employees throughout the process. You need someone who is able to advocate for you and your rights to ensure that you receive appropriate compensation.

We are proud to say that our Illinois work injury attorneys have a combined 19 years experience with work injury cases. The will fight to get workers the compensation they deserve. Call today for a Free Consultation

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