Predictors of non-recovery among auto patients filing insurance claims
People with auto injuries frequently experience long-term disability and pain. Many of these people have pain as the result of an auto collision or other traumatic event, and seek compensation for their treatment. As an attorney, it is often critical to gauge the potential success of a claim and the potential for the patient's long-term recovery, although there is little data to help lawyers do so.
A recent study sought to inform the claim screening process by identifying potential predictors of non-recovery or poorer prognosis. The study involved 246 patients who had claimed compensation for auto injuries between 2007 and 2009. Multiple analysis methods were used to identify potential predictors of poorer recovery among these patients.
Within three months of the initial injury, 23% of the participants had recovered from their injuries, while 9% had finalized their insurance claim. The significant predictors of poorer recovery were helplessness, older age, and pre-injury work status.
The researchers concluded that making additional information available at claim notification could improve the claim screening process by helping identify those with a risk of poor recovery.
Casey PP, et al. Identifying predictors of early non-recovery in a compensation setting: The Whiplash Outcome Study. Injury 2011; 42 (1): 25-32.