Missouri workers who suffer injury on the job are entitled to financial recovery through their employer's workers' compensation insurance. However, you may be unaware of the fact that you could also be entitled to compensation if you become sick as a direct result of your job. Occupational illnesses could be valid grounds to file a workers' compensation benefits claim.
When your work makes you sick, you have the right to seek the support you need in order to achieve a full recovery. You are entitled to medical care, continued rehabilitation as needed and possibly even recompense for lost wages. In order to understand more about your rights, you may find it useful to seek an evaluation of your case.
Common work-related illnesses
Unlike work-related accident injuries, occupational illnesses can develop slowly over time. You may not be aware of how your job is compromising your health until after you have a diagnosis. Sometimes, illnesses are a result of the basic nature of your job, but in some cases, you could become ill due to exposure to toxic chemicals and other substances.
Occupational illnesses include a variety of sicknesses and medical conditions that develop from on-the-job exposure or job duties. Some of the most common of these illnesses and conditions include the following:
- Sickness from poisoning: This can include any type of illness related to exposure to poisonous or toxic substances that the worker ingested, touched or breathed.
- Hearing loss: Sometimes, loud work environments can lead to permanent partial or total hearing loss for the worker.
- Skin diseases: Touching or coming into contact with certain chemicals, even cleaning supplies, can lead to serious skin conditions that impacts an employee's ability to work.
- Respiratory illnesses: Work-related respiratory illnesses can include anything from occupational asthma to lung cancer.
From heat stroke to carpal tunnel, when your job leads to a medical condition that ultimately impacts your ability to work, you would be wise to learn about your options for compensation.
The workers' compensation claims process
Even with a perfectly valid claim, it is not always easy to secure the workers' compensation benefits you need. However, you do not have to walk through this process alone but may find it useful to seek a complete explanation of your legal rights and your claim to financial support.
If you are sick because of your job, you don't have any time to lose in taking the appropriate steps to get what you need for a full recovery and return to work.