Pennsylvania’s worker’s compensation program covers workers who suffer an injury on the job, but it also covers workers who are unable to work because of an occupational disease or illness. Workers’ compensation provides medical expenses for workplace injuries and occupational diseases, and it pays a partial wage replacement benefit when you must lose time at work because of your injury.
Workers’ compensation also includes other benefits such as vocational rehabilitation, lump sum payments for “specific loss” benefits, such as for the loss of a finger, hand, arm, or leg, which are permanent injuries and it provides death benefits to the families of workers who die in workplace accidents.
Examples of occupational diseases covered by workers’ compensation
The following are just a few of the more well-known occupational diseases that are covered by workers’ compensation:
- Respiratory disease
- Hypersensitivity pneumonitis
- Occupational asthma
- Toxic dust syndrome
- Hearing loss
- Lead poisoning
- Musculoskeletal disorder
- Repetitive stress injury
Hazards that can cause occupational disease
There are endless types of hazards that a person might encounter in the workplace which can cause health challenges for employees who do not have appropriate protection including:
- Repetitive or static motion
- Lifting heavy weight
- Occupational stress
- Sexual harassment
- Exposure to toxic chemicals
- Extreme temperatures
- Loud sounds
- Electrical wires
- Bacteria and viruses
A type of occupational disease that many people have heard of is called “black lung” which some coal miners would get after years of exposure to coal dust. Nurses and other health care workers are constantly exposed to dangerous and deadly pathogens and if they develop a disease because of workplace exposure, workers’ compensation would cover their illness.
Employees who have worked in environments where they were exposed to contaminants that can cause disease and who have been diagnosed with an occupational disease might consider consulting with an experienced workers’ compensation attorney right away because there are time limits for filing a claim. Additionally, worker’s compensation benefits are not always guaranteed. Sometimes, the employer’s workers’ compensation insurer will deny a claim for an occupational disease. Your lawyer can help protect your right to receive compensation when you are facing a dispute regarding benefits.
When you work with Larry Pitt & Associates, you work with seasoned Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorneys who are willing to fight for your rights. Please call 1.888. PITT.LAW or fill out our contact form to set up a no-obligation consultation with a dedicated Philadelphia workers’ compensation attorney today when you are dealing with an occupational disease. We proudly serve Berks, Bucks, Chester, Delaware, Montgomery and Philadelphia Counties.