Georgia Code Title 34. Labor and Industrial Relations § 34-9-200

(a)(1) For all injuries occurring on or before June 30, 2013, and for injuries occurring on or after July 1, 2013, designated as catastrophic injuries pursuant to subsection (g) of Code Section 34-9-200.1 , the employer shall furnish the employee entitled to benefits under this chapter such medical, surgical, and hospital care and other treatment, items, and services which are prescribed by a licensed physician, including medical and surgical supplies, artificial members, and prosthetic devices and aids damaged or destroyed in a compensable accident, which in the judgment of the State Board of Workers' Compensation shall be reasonably required and appear likely to effect a cure, give relief, or restore the employee to suitable employment.

(2) For all injuries occurring on or after July 1, 2013, that are not designated as catastrophic injuries pursuant to subsection (g) of Code Section 34-9-200.1 , the employer shall, for a maximum period of 400 weeks from the date of injury, furnish the employee entitled to benefits under this chapter such medical, surgical, and hospital care and other treatment, items, and services which are prescribed by a licensed physician, including medical and surgical supplies, artificial members, and prosthetic devices and aids damaged or destroyed in a compensable accident, which in the judgment of the State Board of Workers' Compensation shall be reasonably required and appear likely to effect a cure, give relief, or restore the employee to suitable employment.

(3)(A) For injuries arising on or after July 1, 2013, that are not designated as catastrophic injuries pursuant to subsection (g) of Code Section 34-9-200.1 , the maximum period of 400 weeks referenced in paragraph (2) of this subsection shall not be applicable to the following care, treatment, services, and items when prescribed by an authorized physician:

(i) Maintenance, repair, revision, replacement, or removal of any prosthetic device, provided that the prosthetic device was originally furnished within 400 weeks of the date of injury or occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment;

(ii) Maintenance, repair, revision, replacement, or removal of a spinal cord stimulator or intrathecal pump device, provided that such items were originally furnished within 400 weeks of the date of injury or occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment;  and

(iii) Maintenance, repair, revision, replacement, or removal of durable medical equipment, orthotics, corrective eyeglasses, or hearing aids, provided that such items were originally furnished within 400 weeks of the date of injury or occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment.

(B) For the purposes of this subsection, the term:

(i) “Durable medical equipment” means an apparatus that provides therapeutic benefits, is primarily and customarily used to serve a medical purpose, and is reusable and appropriate for use in the home.  Such term includes, but shall not be limited to, manual and electric wheelchairs, beds and mattresses, traction equipment, canes, crutches, walkers, oxygen, and nebulizers.

(ii) “Prosthetic device” means an artificial device that has, in whole or in part, replaced a joint lost or damaged or other body part lost or damaged as a result of an injury or occupational disease arising out of and in the course of employment.

(b) Upon the request of an employee or an employer, or upon its own motion, the board may in its judgment, after notice is given in writing of the request to all interested parties and allowing any interested party 15 days from the date of said notice to file in writing its objections to the request, order a change of physician or treatment and designate other treatment or another physician; and, in such case, the expenses shall be borne by the employer upon the same terms and conditions as provided in subsection (a) of this Code section.

(c) As long as an employee is receiving compensation, he or she shall submit himself or herself to examination by the authorized treating physician at reasonable times.  If the employee refuses to submit himself or herself to or in any way obstructs such an examination requested by and provided for by the employer, upon order of the board his or her right to compensation shall be suspended until such refusal or objection ceases and no compensation shall at any time be payable for the period of suspension unless in the opinion of the board the circumstances justify the refusal or obstruction.

(d) If an emergency arises and the employer fails to provide the medical or other care as specified in this Code section, or if other compelling reasons force the employee to seek temporary care, the employee is authorized to seek such temporary care as may be necessary. The employer shall pay the reasonable costs of the temporary care if ordered by the board.


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