California Labor Code Section 4600
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California Laws > Labor Code > California Labor Code Section 4600
4600. (a) Medical, surgical, chiropractic, acupuncture, and
hospital treatment, including nursing, medicines, medical and
surgical supplies, crutches, and apparatuses, including orthotic and
prosthetic devices and services, that is reasonably required to cure
or relieve the injured worker from the effects of his or her injury
shall be provided by the employer. In the case of his or her neglect
or refusal reasonably to do so, the employer is liable for the
reasonable expense incurred by or on behalf of the employee in
(b) As used in this division and notwithstanding any other law,
medical treatment that is reasonably required to cure or relieve the
injured worker from the effects of his or her injury means treatment
that is based upon the guidelines adopted by the administrative
director pursuant to Section 5307.27.
(c) Unless the employer or the employer's insurer has established
or contracted with a medical provider network as provided for in
Section 4616, after 30 days from the date the injury is reported, the
employee may be treated by a physician of his or her own choice or
at a facility of his or her own choice within a reasonable geographic
area. A chiropractor shall not be a treating physician after the
employee has received the maximum number of chiropractic visits
allowed by subdivision (c) of Section 4604.5.
(d) (1) If an employee has notified his or her employer in writing
prior to the date of injury that he or she has a personal physician,
the employee shall have the right to be treated by that physician
from the date of injury if the employee has health care coverage for
nonoccupational injuries or illnesses on the date of injury in a
plan, policy, or fund as described in subdivisions (b), (c), and (d)
of Section 4616.7.
(2) For purposes of paragraph (1), a personal physician shall meet
all of the following conditions:
(A) Be the employee's regular physician and surgeon, licensed
pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with Section 2000) of Division 2 of
the Business and Professions Code.
(B) Be the employee's primary care physician and has previously
directed the medical treatment of the employee, and who retains the
employee's medical records, including his or her medical history.
"Personal physician" includes a medical group, if the medical group
is a single corporation or partnership composed of licensed doctors
of medicine or osteopathy, which operates an integrated
multispecialty medical group providing comprehensive medical services
predominantly for nonoccupational illnesses and injuries.
(C) The physician agrees to be predesignated.
(3) If the employee has health care coverage for nonoccupational
injuries or illnesses on the date of injury in a health care service
plan licensed pursuant to Chapter 2.2 (commencing with Section 1340)
of Division 2 of the Health and Safety Code, and the employer is
notified pursuant to paragraph (1), all medical treatment,
utilization review of medical treatment, access to medical treatment,
and other medical treatment issues shall be governed by Chapter 2.2
(commencing with Section 1340) of Division 2 of the Health and Safety
Code. Disputes regarding the provision of medical treatment shall be
resolved pursuant to Article 5.55 (commencing with Section 1374.30)
of Chapter 2.2 of Division 2 of the Health and Safety Code.
(4) If the employee has health care coverage for nonoccupational
injuries or illnesses on the date of injury in a group health
insurance policy as described in Section 4616.7, all medical
treatment, utilization review of medical treatment, access to medical
treatment, and other medical treatment issues shall be governed by
the applicable provisions of the Insurance Code.
(5) The insurer may require prior authorization of any
nonemergency treatment or diagnostic service and may conduct
reasonably necessary utilization review pursuant to Section 4610.
(6) An employee shall be entitled to all medically appropriate
referrals by the personal physician to other physicians or medical
providers within the nonoccupational health care plan. An employee
shall be entitled to treatment by physicians or other medical
providers outside of the nonoccupational health care plan pursuant to
standards established in Article 5 (commencing with Section 1367) of
Chapter 2.2 of Division 2 of the Health and Safety Code.
(e) (1) When at the request of the employer, the employer's
insurer, the administrative director, the appeals board, or a workers'
compensation administrative law judge, the employee submits to
examination by a physician, he or she shall be entitled to receive,
in addition to all other benefits herein provided, all reasonable
expenses of transportation, meals, and lodging incident to reporting
for the examination, together with one day of temporary disability
indemnity for each day of wages lost in submitting to the
(2) Regardless of the date of injury, "reasonable expenses of
transportation" includes mileage fees from the employee's home to the
place of the examination and back at the rate of twenty-one cents
($0.21) a mile or the mileage rate adopted by the Director of Human
Resources pursuant to Section 19820 of the Government Code, whichever
is higher, plus any bridge tolls. The mileage and tolls shall be
paid to the employee at the time he or she is given notification of
the time and place of the examination.
(f) When at the request of the employer, the employer's insurer,
the administrative director, the appeals board, or a workers'
compensation administrative law judge, an employee submits to
examination by a physician and the employee does not proficiently
speak or understand the English language, he or she shall be entitled
to the services of a qualified interpreter in accordance with
conditions and a fee schedule prescribed by the administrative
director. These services shall be provided by the employer. For
purposes of this section, "qualified interpreter" means a language
interpreter certified, or deemed certified, pursuant to Article 8
(commencing with Section 11435.05) of Chapter 4.5 of Part 1 of
Division 3 of Title 2 of, or Section 68566 of, the Government Code.
(g) If the injured employee cannot effectively communicate with
his or her treating physician because he or she cannot proficiently
speak or understand the English language, the injured employee is
entitled to the services of a qualified interpreter during medical
treatment appointments. To be a qualified interpreter for purposes of
medical treatment appointments, an interpreter is not required to
meet the requirements of subdivision (f), but commencing March 1,
2014, shall meet any requirements established by rule by the
administrative director that are substantially similar to the
requirements set forth in Section 1367.04 of the Health and Safety
Code, notwithstanding any other effective date established in
regulations. The administrative director shall adopt a fee schedule
for qualified interpreter fees in accordance with this section. Upon
request of the injured employee, the employer or insurance carrier
shall pay for interpreter services. An employer shall not be required
to pay for the services of an interpreter who is not certified or is
provisionally certified by the person conducting the medical
treatment or examination unless either the employer consents in
advance to the selection of the individual who provides the
interpreting service or the injured worker requires interpreting
service in a language other than the languages designated pursuant to
Section 11435.40 of the Government Code.
(h) Home health care services shall be provided as medical
treatment only if reasonably required to cure or relieve the injured
employee from the effects of his or her injury and prescribed by a
physician and surgeon licensed pursuant to Chapter 5 (commencing with
Section 2000) of Division 2 of the Business and Professions Code,
and subject to Section 5307.1 or 5703.8. The employer shall not be
liable for home health care services that are provided more than 14
days prior to the date of the employer's receipt of the physician's
Last modified: March 17, 2014