Who's Paying The "Independent" Medical Examiner in Your Injury Claim?
I’ve written many times about the lucrative business of ‘independent‘ medical exams in the context of personal injury claims. Since ICBC is a public institution they disclose annual financial statements documenting how much they have paid various doctors. A review of these statements reveals that a handful of doctors get a lot of repeat business from ICBC and that some earn hundreds of thousands of dollars per year doing this work.
Another useful source of information is the Ministry of Health “Blue Book” which is published each year and reveals annual MSP “Payments to Practitioners“.
If you cross reference these two sources of information you can gain useful insight into some of the various streams of income of independent medical examiners.
One quick illustration are the reported ICBC and MSP billings of Dr. J. F. Schweigel. If you look at his company’s ICBC billings for 2009 and contrast these with his MSP billings for the same year it becomes clear just how lucrative the independent medical examination business can be for a practicing doctor.
2009 ICBC Billings
2009 MSP Billings
If you’re interested in learning who’s paying your indepdendent medical examiner some quick homework can reveal very useful information.
(Note: it’s worth pointing out that MSP billings are not the only source of income for physicians’ clinical practices in BC. One noteworthy example would be Health Authority Billings where a doctor has hospital privileges. When scrutinizing physician billings its good practice to get as much information as possible from all sources to get a fair and objective picture.)