Anybody injured ever heard of VocWorks?

Discussion in 'UPS Discussions' started by rocket88, Nov 12, 2006.

  1. rocket88

    rocket88 Member

    I was injured on the job and have to have reconstructive surgery. I will be having surgery soon. The other day i received a call from a company called "VocWorks." They claim to be patient adovcates. The woman wanted to ask me all kinds of medical questions pertaining to my injury and pending surgery. I asked who she worked for and she was elusive and vague. She keep telling me she was a nurse and was concerened about my care and that it her job to be my advocate. To make sure all the paperwork was in order and that I get paid in a timely manner and that she is there to help "transition" me into another line of work!
    I refused to respond to a single question and pretty mush just hung up on her. Of course she called!
    Who is VocWorks? Has anyone here ever heard of them or had dealings with them?
  2. jlphotog

    jlphotog Member

    Try this


    Their web site seems to confirm what you were told. But I would be suspicious as well unless others have heard of and had dealings with them.
  3. helenofcalifornia

    helenofcalifornia Well-Known Member

    When I had a worker's comp claim going I had this nurse go with me to all my doctor's appointments. She couldn't go in the room to see the doctor unless I OK'd it.(right!!!) And she talked to my doctor all kinds. Actually, I got along with her pretty well and it worked out OK in that we both agreed with my progress and diagnosis. Never had one with a disability claim. And definitely not VocWorks. I live in Norcal BTW.
  4. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    I could be wrong but......

    based on my understanding of what I saw on the link provided by another poster, this may be a third party hired by "our" company to prepare you to be railroaded out of your present job with "our" company and into another job with another company.
    I would be extremely cautious what, if anything, you tell those people.
    You didn't mention the nature on your injury and if it will prevent your future ability to do your job.

    Once again, I could be wrong.......
  5. Pip

    Pip New Member

    Unless I'm mistaken, vocworks is usually hired/subcontracted by the workers comp. or an insurance co.( depending on the situation) to oversee that your getting or rather workers comp is getting what there paying for. Vocworks is the eyes and ears for workers comp.

    Without a go-between workers comp is getting the information they are being told over the phone and over the fax. In one way they are there to make sure of cost effective matters and to also look out for the patient, that they are getting the proper care. Another use of these company's is to help cut down on fradulant(sp) claims.

    Vocworks is not all bad, they do good too. Hopefully the proper care is given. BUT, this is always open for interpretation. basicly you have an RN possibly second guessing a specialist. which could open a can of worms.

    I dealt with this when I broke my neck back in 93'. 80% of what the work they did was all good. No problems on my end until the RN tried to start second guessing 2 different neurosurgeons (who were not working together) about my treatment. This started getting a little hairy to say the least.

    the RN started to get the notion that she had the final say on my surgeries. I ended up getting a lawyer involved to quit the delays. it did go to court and the RN's company ended up paying all the legal fees associated.

    This was in most cases an isolated case, but can happen. Don't be afraid of these people, but in the same breathe, don't put all your trust in their judgement, just the same.
  6. rocket88

    rocket88 Member

    That's the feeling I got. This "patient advocate" seems to think that I won't be returning to my old job. I am a package car driver with 21 years on the job. I fully intend to return to my job as a driver.
    I was put off by her questioning of my injury and care. I have no idea who she is. She did tell me that she was a nurse.
    As far as her being a watchdog for worker's comp, I am in Central States, and UPS is self insured and everything so far has gone through Safety Dept. and the Frank Gates Agency, I found it odd that out of now where with out asking and without being refered to by by Dr. ( I checked) this RN calls me and wants all the intimate details of my injury and care so that she can be my advocate and "transition" me after my surgery.
    Again, I asked who she worked for a couple of times and her answers were vague.
  7. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    Just some suggestions.......

    -Run down to the local nationally known electronics store and purchase the equipment to record future phone calls.

    -questions I would ask the next time she calls might be:
    who authorized you to speak to me?
    what is your full name?
    what is your nursing license number(this should be public information and I believe you have the right to ask)?
    what is the phone number of your office in this city?
    what is your supervisors name?
    why are you being vague when I ask you questions?
    for what purpose do you need this information?
    who do you represent?

    You've been around long enough to know that these people will smile at you while they are running the knife in your back.
    I would also make it a point to let people favorable to you (such as your doctor, physical therapist, attorney) know about this organization and what they seem to be doing.
    These are just suggestions that I might try, you are free to do as you please.
    Good Luck.
    Last edited: Nov 13, 2006
  8. happybob

    happybob Feeders

    To help transition you to another line of work! You may end up with a permanent loss of function and limited lifting restrictions after your surgery. The company is up to their eyeballs in law suits for this type action. Your surgery may leave you disabled under the Americans with Disibilites Act and you will need to protect yourself should this occur. Good luck.
  9. Anon

    Anon Guest

    There fixed it for you. Because I'm quite sure you must ask that in most state's before recording people without their knowledge. Then if they say NO just hang up.
  10. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    Thanks, you are right.
    I never claimed to be an attorney.
    I was hoping the OP would post back with the nature of his injury. Is reconstructive surgery the same as a replacement?
    Just an afterthought.........
    the people that are calling you may be interested in your physical therapy to the extent that they may have a machine at your home very soon after the surgery to assure ROM and flexiblility of the affected body part/system.

    I agree with "Pip" to a degree. They may be there to help you but I would be cautious. I never figured out if you have an attorney to protect your interests.
  11. sickandtired

    sickandtired 1daycloser2retire

    Get your self a Work Comp attorney. They represent your interest not the companys. They will make sure that your reimbursed for everything and you can refer all questionable calls to them for discussion. Companies other than Lib Mutual have polices to record your conversations and will use it against you if needed. I had a long drawn out case and it got ugly, so protect your future and get representation.
  12. rocket88

    rocket88 Member

    It is a shoulder injury. It was a unmarked overweight pottery barn. Tore the cartiledge and tendon and muscle in my left shoulder. I've had a ton of physical therapy, cortison shots, anti inflammatory pills, pain killers and tylenol and buckets and buckets of ice. All to no avail. The MRI was pretty conclusive. Surgery is my only option now. Either that or just put up with it. I have been working with no restrictions on my route. The surgeon said that the damage was already done. UPS did manage to get me out of the 800 I was in and into a older model 700 ( no automatic) but it does have power steering and a low step.
    The surgeon said I'll be out about 16 weeks or so, and sees no reason why I can't make a full recovery and return to my job as a package car driver.
  13. trickpony1

    trickpony1 Well-Known Member

    "....make a full recovery and return to my job....."
    Please don't let them push you into coming back too early and risking re-injury.
    Without an attorney representing you, they may try this.
  14. hoser

    hoser Industrial Slob

    Anything legitimate would involve them saying "I'm calling on behalf of UPS", and they'd be very upfront with who they are, who they work for, what they do, and why they are calling. They also wouldn't have an issue with you saying "let me call my supervisor to run this by them, I'll call YOU back".

    Otherwise, keep your mouth shut. Your injury is nobody else's business, except the consultants UPS has to determine what your injury is and how it affects your ability to do the job.
  15. rocket88

    rocket88 Member

    Received the letter and pamphlet from VocWorks explaining who they are and what the do(except who they work for/get paid by)
    The letter said that she(my nurse/patient advocate) will be attending my Dr. appointments with me and my physical therapy appointments with me in order to work "closely with my Dr. and other healthcare professionals." My question is, can I stop her from doing this? Any input would be greatly appreciated.
    I have nothing at all to hide. But with the HIPPA Laws and Privacy Laws, can she just come to my appointments and ask questions,or interject her opionion? I don't care who is paying the bill. Isnt my care between my Dr. and I ??
  16. Pip

    Pip New Member

    Rocket,you can't keep them from showing up at the doctors office. But, you don't have to let them go into the examination room with you. If they want to speak to the doctor then can do it after, but even then you can still say no.

    the RN I had, always got :censored2: at me because I would not let her go in with me. My Doctor loved to play with these people, keep them in the dark as much as possible, only giving them enough to make it look like you were cooperating.

    Most likely, your doctor has dealt with this in the past and will know how to handle it. Don't be rude, or feel pressured, if you don't feel comfortable with the situation.the RN or her company can not force you to let her in. Just be polite and say no. Tell them they can chat with the doctor afterwards if his schedule allows it.

    When dealing with them, keep this in mind, "less is better". Meaning, don't tell them what you think, only tell them what you know. your not the professional, your the patient.

    If things start getting over your head, then by all means get a lawyer to help you deal with them, before you say something stupid.

    Keep in mind who is paying these people, who they are actually working for. Just use good judgement, don't hang yourself. make yourself a log and keep times and dates and names of when you deal with them. tape recordings are always helpful. If they don't want to answer your questions, then don't answer theirs. It works both ways.
  17. rocket88

    rocket88 Member

    I talked yo my B.A. about this. He LAUGHINGLY said if they show up at thr Dr. office or physical therapy call the cops on them. He admitted it would be way extreme. He did stress though that they can't be there without my permission. He said to look up Article 14 Section 1 Paragraph 7 of the National Master.
    "In such cases, no represenative of the Employer shall be permitted to accompany the injured worker while he/she is receiving medical treatment and/or being examined by the medical provider, without the employee's consent.