When you have to attend at the doctor’s office, on the request of ICBC, the assessment may have a significant impact on how ICBC deals with your case. The last thing you want to do is give the doctor ammunition to suggest that you are somehow exaggerating your injury complaints or you are not being truthful.
To start with, you can assume that this doctor will have clinical records of all your doctors/therapists both before and after your accident. Therefore, you should tell the doctor everything about your pre-accident health history or any intervening events since the accident. Do not feel that you can avoid disclosure of these events/ injuries to the doctor because chances are, the ICBC doctor knows about them. If you do not disclose these events to the doctor, he/she will report to ICBC that you have not been particularly honest or forthcoming regarding your medical history.
ICBC doctors will emphasize the fact that you did not disclose certain information to them. This means that you almost have an obligation to disclose information even if you are not asked to do so. In this way, the best thing to do is to provide full disclosure of all potentially important information so that the doctor cannot turn around and suggest you are hiding the information.
In terms of reporting your condition, there is really no sense in exaggerating your symptoms to try to emphasize your condition to this doctor in hopes of convincing him/her that you are significantly injured. ICBC chooses very “conservative” doctors to see ICBC claimants and chances are, regardless of your subjective complaints, you will not be able to convince him/her of the serious nature of the injuries unless there are clear objective signs of injury (i.e. broken bone, herniated disc, etc…). Because of their conservative nature, these doctors tend to focus on objective signs of injury. They do not put much weight on the complaints that you self-report to them because they consider these complaints to be subjective in nature. Therefore, do not bother trying to emphasize your injuries in hopes of convincing the ICBC doctor. It is not going to work.
Once a defense doctor has asked you about history and your complaints, the doctor then does a physical assessment. During the physical assessment, the doctor is testing you to see whether your complaints are in any way exaggerated. Remember, the doctor is the expert and will easily be able to figure out if you are not giving him/her an accurate assessment.
In summary, your priority and focus should be on providing full disclosure to the ICBC doctor. You should not embellish your complaints in the hopes of convincing the doctor of the serious nature of your injuries. The reality of the situation is that there is not a lot you can do to convince the ICBC doctor to write a favourable report for you. Further, you can expect that the ICBC doctor is likely conservative in nature or else ICBC would not be using the doctor.
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