Who Covers the Medical Expenses After a Pedestrian Accident?
Pedestrians are injured in car crashes every year, and many of those injuries are life-changing. Over 6,500 pedestrians died in traffic accidents in 2016. These fatalities rose four percent from 2015 and were 17 percent of all crash fatalities. Since 1990, pedestrian fatalities have fallen 62 percent. Yet, despite public awareness campaigns, increased driver safety features, and laws designed to protect pedestrians, pedestrian injuries remain high. Many of these injuries are devastating and lead to long recovery periods and significant financial burdens. For example, someone could suffer a spinal cord injury (SCI) after being hit by a car. SCIs are often permanent, leaving victims unable to walk, talk, feed themselves, or care for their children. In addition to the physical damage, SCI victims also face substantial medical costs. Victims may need expensive surgery, rehabilitation services, and ongoing health care. The average cost of an SCI is $1 million. Those with TBIs incur similar expenses. Traumatic brain injuries are caused when the head strikes another object at speed. Symptoms include loss of consciousness, memory problems, seizures, and coma. After a TBI, people may require hospitalization, skilled nursing facility stays, home healthcare, and/or outpatient therapy. Some victims lose their jobs and struggle financially. There is no national database tracking the total number of people injured by cars. However, insurance claims suggest that there are about 1.2 million injuries each year. Of those, approximately 40,000 are fatal.
If you get injured in an accident, your first priority is getting well again. You need to treat all of your injuries, even if it means paying out of pocket for expensive treatments. If you are not sure about the costs associated with your injury, ask your doctor for advice. Your insurance may cover some of the expenses, but you will likely pay a deductible before receiving reimbursement. You may also be required to wait until after you receive some form of compensation before receiving money for your medical bills.
Injuries sustained in car accidents can be expensive. Many people choose to pay for their own treatment out of pocket instead of using an emergency room. This can lead to higher charges and long wait times at hospitals. Insurance companies often require patients to visit an emergency room before they cover any expenses.
Severe injuries can cause many complications. A broken arm or leg could mean weeks of recovery at home before returning to normal activities. Severe spinal cord injuries can leave victims unable to walk or even move their hands. Internal injuries like heart attacks or stroke can lead to long hospital stays and expensive medical bills. When someone needs treatment for an injury, there are several ways to pay for it. One option is to ask friends and family members to cover the cost of medical expenses. Another is to apply for financial aid through the government or private organizations. There are also insurance plans available that will cover most of the costs associated with an injury. However, health insurance policies are not always affordable or accessible. In addition, there are programs offered by hospitals and clinics that offer free or low-cost services to people who have limited income. These programs can help reduce the burden of medical debt for patients recovering from an injury.
Broken bones and dislocations are usually treated in the hospital emergency room. Pedestrians who sustain them should seek immediate medical attention. However, if you are not sure whether your injury needs professional care, the following tips will help you determine whether you should go to the ER. If you think you need to see a doctor, call 911 first. Check your body for cuts, bruises, and other signs of trauma. Ask yourself what happened. Was it an accident? Did someone hit you intentionally?
In some situations, rehabilitation may need to occur in an inpatient setting at a rehabilitation facility where staff can provide focused attention to the patient for several hours each day. Other pedestrians may require in-home caregiving assistance to assist them with daily tasks while they recover. Some pedestrian accident victims may require psychological therapy to help them cope with their injuries or work through the trauma associated with the accident. Each of the above treatments can cost thousands of dollars, adding substantial financial strain on the pedestrian victim. Many pedestrian accident victims feel unable to pay for the high quality of care required.
In 2016, there were approximately 5 million motor vehicle accidents involving pedestrians in the United States. Of these, 3.5 million resulted in serious injury or death. Pedestrian fatalities accounted for 2% of all traffic deaths, while pedestrian injury rates ranged from 1.4–2.3 per 100 million population. Pedestrians are at risk because drivers often fail to yield right-of-way, drive distracted, speed excessively, or fail to wear proper safety equipment.
In many cases, drivers who are responsible for accidents are not held accountable. Drivers can be liable for accidents if they violate certain laws. These violations can include driving while intoxicated, texting while driving, speeding, running red lights, etc. If you are found liable for your own accident, you may be required to pay damages, including medical bills, lost wages, property damage, pain and suffering, and more. You may also be required to pay fines and court costs.
A pedestrian accident claim can provide you with the financial means to cover your medical bills while you wait for your claim to settle. You might be able to get a letter of protection filed by your lawyer saying that if you don’t receive compensation for your claim within a certain amount of time, then you will pay for your medical bills. Or, you might negotiate a medical lien with your medical provider. These agreements allow your medical provider to collect payment from your insurance company when you receive settlement funds.
If you've been injured in a car accident, you may be wondering what happens next. You'll likely receive medical care and treatment in a hospital emergency room. Afterward, you'll probably be asked if you want to file a claim against the other driver. If you choose to do so, you'll need to hire an attorney to represent you. An attorney can explain your legal rights and options to help you get the money you deserve.
Contact an experienced personal injury lawyer in Harris County, Galveston County, Fort Bend County, Montgomery County, Brazoria County, Houston, Sugar Land, Missouri City, Stafford, Texas at Thornton Esquire Law Group, PLLC, immediately following your accident. A knowledgeable attorney will help you understand your legal rights and options to maximize compensation for your injuries. Contact us today at www.thorntonesquirelawgroup.com for a free consultation.