(1) For claims arising on or after July 1, 2013, "treating physician" has the meaning provided by 39-71-116, MCA.
(2) The worker may select a treating physician. Initial treatment in an emergency room or urgent care facility is not selection of a treating physician. The selection of a treating physician should be made as soon as practicable. A worker may not avoid selection of a treating physician by repeatedly seeking care in an emergency room or urgent care facility. The worker should select a treating physician with due consideration for the type of injury or occupational disease suffered, as well as practical considerations such as the proximity and the availability of the physician to the worker.
(3) Any time after an insurer accepts liability for an injury or occupational disease, the insurer may recognize a treating physician selected by the injured worker. The treating physician is compensated at 100 percent of the fee schedule.
(4) After acceptance of liability, the insurer may formally approve the treating physician selected by the injured worker as a designated treating physician or may choose a different physician to be the designated treating physician. The designated treating physician is compensated at 110 percent of the fee schedule.
(a) The designated treating physician is responsible for coordination of all medical care, pursuant to 39-71-1101(2), MCA. The designated treating physician must agree to accept these responsibilities.
(b) The insurer must provide formal notification of the designated treating physician by e-mail, facsimile, or letter to:
(i) the injured worker;
(ii) the current treating physician; and
(iii) the designated treating physician. The effective date of the designation of treating physician is the date the insurer sends the notice of designation unless the physician declines within ten working days.
(c) A health care provider who is referred by the designated treating physician is compensated at 90 percent of the fee schedule. These providers are not responsible for coordinating care or providing determinations as required by the designated treating physician.
(5) Treatment from a physician's assistant or an advanced practice nurse, when the treatment is under the direction of the treating physician, does not constitute a change of physician and does not require prior authorization pursuant to ARM 24.29.1517.
(6) Subject to 39-71-1101, MCA, ARM 24.29.1517, and any other applicable rule or statute, nothing in this rule prohibits the claimant from receiving treatment from more than one physician if required by the claimant's injury or occupational disease.