Frequently Asked Questions (FAQ)
What is Physiotherapy?
Physiotherapy is a primary care, patient-focused health profession dedicated to improving quality of life by promoting optimal mobility, physical activity and overall health and wellness; Preventing disease, injury, and disability; Managing acute and chronic conditions, activity limitations, and participation restrictions; Improving and maintaining optimal functional independence and physical performance; Rehabilitating injury and the effects of disease or disability with therapeutic exercise programs and other interventions; and Educating and planning maintenance and support programs to prevent re-occurrence, re-injury or functional decline.
Physiotherapy is anchored in movement sciences and aims to enhance or restore function of multiple body systems. Physiotherapists utilize diagnostic and assessment procedures and tools in order to develop and implement preventive and therapeutic courses of intervention. They apply a collaborative and reasoned approach to help clients achieve their health goals (Canadian Physiotherapy Association). Visit our How Can Physiotherapy Help You page for further information.
Do I require a doctors referral to see a physiotherapist?
Physiotherapists are primary access practitioners under the Regulated Health Professions Act and do not require a physician referral to treat. However some insurers do require a written medical prescription from your doctor before they will pay for the service.
Do you bill directly to my insurance company?
No, we do not do direct billing. You will be issued a receipt upon payment to submit to your insurance company for reimbursement.
Is physiotherapy treatment covered by OHIP?
The government provides coverage for seniors, youth and other categories of patients to obtain physiotherapy services at specific OHIP-funded physiotherapy clinics. There are a limited number of these physiotherapy clinics across the province.
To be covered for physiotherapy services at a publicly-funded physiotherapy clinic, you require a referral and:
- Be 19 years old or younger or
- Be 65 years old or older or
- Be receiving benefits under the Ontario Disability Support Program or Family Works or
- Have been overnight in hospital for a condition that now requires physiotherapy treatment
- Visit http://www.collegept.org/PubliclyFundedPTclinics for a list of OHIP-funded clinics
Do you accept Workplace Safety and Insurance (WSIB) claims?
Yes, we do. We are registered with the WSIB and are able to bill our services on your behalf directly to WSIB once your claim has been approved. We will complete and submit the paperwork required for approval of treatment funding.
Do you accept Motor Vehicle Accident (MVA) claims?
Yes, we do. We are able to bill your insurance company directly once any extended healthcare coverage that you may have has been accessed fully. This is mandated by government legislation. We will complete all the necessary paperwork required for approval of treatment funding. Depending on your type of injury, you will be placed into one of two funding groups; the Minor Injury Guideline (MIG) with a cap of $3500 funding, or the Catastrophic Injury group with a cap of $50 000. Funding is also dependant on your policy choices. Your physiotherapist will discuss this in further detail with you following your initial assessment.
Are orthotics covered by my insurance plan?
Every extended health care plan is different. Most plans do cover custom orthotics, however each insurance provider may have different specifications regarding who is eligible to prescribe orthotics, such as a physiotherapist, chiropractor, pedorthist, podiatrist, or chiropodist. Please check with your insurance provider whether your plan covers custom orthotics prescribed by a physiotherapist.
What can I expect at my first appointment?
Upon your arrival you will be greeted by our administrative staff and they will guide you through any form preparation or other paperwork needed prior to the appointment. The Physiotherapist will then perform an assessment with you to determine the nature of the problem and important information about it. We will ask a number of questions about the problem and the factors that affect it. An examination will include any specific movements and tests to confirm the clinical diagnosis. We then sit down with you to explain the problem and our approach to helping you and to answer any questions you might have. Treatment usually commences with that appointment as well if time permits.
Treatment is individualized to your needs and could include exercise, hands-on manual therapy, mobilization, spinal or peripheral joint manipulation, acupuncture, electrical modalities such as ultrasound or electrical stimulation, heat or ice and advice about home or work activities and prevention strategies. We will discuss return to work or sports and explain any precautions or modifications that might be necessary.
Throughout treatment you are encouraged to ask questions and to give us feedback about your progress or symptoms.
What is an FCAMPT?
FCAMPT is a designation that stands for Fellow of the Canadian Academy of Manipulative Physiotherapy (CAMPT). This represents the highest recognized level of manual skills and knowledge in physiotherapy orthopaedics in Canada. Physiotherapists who hold the title FCAMPT have completed extensive post-graudate education in biomechanics, pathology and manual therapy techniques, including spinal manipulations. FCAMPT certified therapists provide focused treatment based on research-guided techniques that speed up patient recovery while educating them about their condition to reduce the risk of relapse For more information on the benefits of choosing an FCAMPT please visit the CAMPT website.
What is the difference between IMS and traditional acupuncture?
Intramuscular Stimulation (IMS) is a total system for the diagnosis and treatment of chronic pain of a neuropathic origin. Neuropathic pain occurs when nerves malfunction following injury or tissue irritation. Nerve endings become overly sensitive and begin to interpret normal sensations as pain. IMS relies heavily on a thorough physical examination by a certified practitioner trained to recognize the physical signs of neuropathic pain. The treatment involves dry needling of affected areas of the body, which can be muscles in the periphery (such as in the legs or arms), or they can be near the spine where the nerve root may have become irritated. Only one needle is inserted at a time and stays in for only a few seconds; multiple muscles may be treated in one session. This type of needling creates some muscle soreness during treatment and may last for a few hours to a day or two. This temporary discomfort is followed by significant muscle relaxation, improved mobility and reduction of pain.
Like IMS, traditional acupuncture involves the insertion of very fine needles; however the technique and purpose are very different from each other. Traditional acupuncture is very gentle with only mild discomfort association with insertion of the needles. Selection of treatment areas are based on the principals of Chinese meridians (channels of energy flow in the body) In traditional acupuncture the needles are typically left in for 15-20 minutes or longer and the purpose is to stimulate the body's release of natural painkillers (endorphins) and anti-inflammatories. Traditional acupuncture produces effects in areas of the body other than just the area of needling.
How can physiotherapy help with incontinence?
Visit our Pelvic Floor page for further information.