Physio treatment user fees dropped for auto accident injuries

ICBC negotiates new contract with B.C. Physiotherapy Association

A major financial barrier to motor vehicle accident victims seeking physiotherapy treatments has been removed by ICBC.

Under new regulations coming into effect April 1, 2019, ICBC will remove the need for physio user fee charges for anyone injured in a crash regardless of fault.

The physio care aspect is part of new regulations concerning sprains, strains, aches, cuts, bruises, minor whiplash, concussions and mental health issues caused by automobile crashes.

Kevin Bos

Kelowna physiotherapist Kevin Bos, co-owner of Sun City Physiotherapy who sits on the Physiotherapy Association of B.C. board of directors, said the new contract between the association and the province increases pre-authorized treatments from 20 to 25, an initial assessment visit and report and agreement on a new fee structure that eliminates the need for user fees.

RELATED: Five common physiotherapy questions answered

“Our last contract with ICBC was 1993, so for several decades we have had to charge user fees to allow for cost of living increases. Every few years that would increase and that became a huge barrier for some people in accessing care,” Bos said.

‘With the financial cost issue now removed, it will allow for that initial physio treatment intervention to happen right away which should result in a huge improvement in patient outcomes. Early treatment of accident-related injuries is critical and will make a big difference for people.”

He said people ignoring the hurt or pain from accident-related injuries often find their nerve or tissue damage the source for further complicating health issues if ignored for months after the accident.

“The longer those kind of injuries carry on untreated, developing into chronic pain situations, they end up being extremely challenging for everyone to resolve,” he said.

Bos said his association had a seat at the table in the negotiations over fee and funding allocations, which he said was an exciting advancement for his side of the health care professions, an acknowledgement within government health care circles of how physiotherapy can play a key role in facilitating positive treatment outcomes for accident victims and work to reduce health care costs.

RELATED: Looking under the hood of ICBC’s war on crashes

He added an uptake in the physio client demand could result from the ICBC changes, which may pose another problem with the current inability to fill current private and government care physio positions.

“With the province right now, there about 200 vacancies in physio job openings. We are having to recruit more people from out of province to keep up with the demand,” he said.

He said solutions to that issue revolve around physio health care funding and creating more university student spaces for potential physiotherapy graduates to meet the job demand.



barry.gerding@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

B.C. Tree Fruits searching for new CEO and CFO

Top job postings at growers’ cooperative listed quietly at the end of November

Deadline looming for participation in Okanagan Travel Survey

Those who were sent survey questionnaires have until Dec. 18 to complete and return them

Submissions sought for UBC Okanagan’s annual fiction competition

University’s annual short-story contest enters its 21st year

Your guide to winter light ups around the Okanagan

From Vernon to Summerland, with a stop in Kelowna, we’ve found some activities for you to enjoy

Man caught on camera allegedly trying to defraud ICBC

Auto-insurer warns B.C. drivers to record info after crashes

Warning issued as forecast calls for 20-foot waves in Tofino

Dangerous waves, strong currents and upper-shoreline flooding expected for Tofino-Ucluelet area

An 800-pound pig named Theodore needs a forever home, B.C. society says

‘Theodore is not destined to be somebody’s bacon’

Single-bridge option chosen to replace Highway 1 bridge in Sicamous

Five-lane span selected over plan with second bridge at Sicamous’ Main Street

UPDATE: Highway 1 closed east of Revelstoke, expected to open at 7:30 p.m.

Highway 1 is closed east of Revelstoke near the west entrance to… Continue reading

Teenager Alphonso Davies wins Canadian Men’s Soccer Player for the Year Award

Derek Cornelius and Chilliwack native, Jordyn Huitema were named Canadian Youth International Players of the Year

B.C. teen MMA fighter shows heart

Young Unity MMA competitors bring home Ws

2,000 Canadians died of an overdose in first 6 months of the year

New data from the Public Health Agency of Canada shows the crisis is not subsiding

Another B.C. city votes to ban single-use plastic bags

First six months of proposed ban would focus on education, not enforcement

Most Read