Most types of jobs come with a certain risk and some are more obvious than others. Construction workers are usually at risk of serious physical injuries since they deal with heavy machinery and manual labor. Office workers can be at risk for eye strain and carpal tunnel. Firefighters and police officers may be hurt in the line of duty whether it’s from capturing a perpetrator or getting a burn while carrying someone out of a burning building.
However, first-responders like firefighters and police officers may also be at risk for a less obvious injury. Psychological injuries can be just as damaging as any physical injury and unfortunately, they are not uncommon in high-risk jobs.
But will your workers’ compensation provide you with benefits for injuries that are unseen?
Are mental and psychiatric troubles covered?
Fortunately, many mental conditions can be covered by workers’ compensation. Unfortunately, like some other types of injuries, they can be difficult to prove. In order for a psychological injury to be covered, you must prove that you work was the cause of the issue.
If a psychological or mental injury is tied to a physical work accident, workers’ compensation can be easier to prove. For example, if you have a high-stress job and the mental anguish triggered a heart attack.
However, for employees like firefighters and police officers, it’s not too far of a leap to assume that certain mental conditions can be caused by the high-stress and high-risk that comes with the job. For example, if a firefighter suffered a physical injury that later caused a mental disorder such as anxiety or PTSD, this would help prove a psychological workers’ compensation claim.
Are psycological injuries as serious as physical injuries?
Some people may think that a mental illness or condition is not as debilitating as a physical injury and may hesitate to seek compensation. This is not true. Many mental illnesses and conditions can prove to be just as harmful as physical ones. In some cases, people cannot work due to their psychological injuries and they should be compensated the same way they would for a physical injury.
Workers’ comp is a complex type of benefit, especially when it comes to unseen injury. Firefighters, police officers and other first-responders have a huge civic duty and carry a lot of responsibility. There is no reason they should be denied the benefits they deserve.