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

Benches made from wood that posed a fire risk in Lake Country

The parks team is making benches from the trees removed from the Jack Seaton Park

Rutland pride spills over

Reaction to a story this weekend was clear and worth a second read

Family Day move a welcome change: poll

Okanagan readers voted that the new date for Family Day in B.C. is a positive change

Huge crack and bang heard as Wood Lake fractures

‘It was roaring across the lake,’ Lake Country woman recounts sound of crack in Wood Lake ice

Former Prime Minister comes to Kelowna

Stephen Harper will speak in Kelowna March 12

‘Just like Iron Man’: Calgary surgeon undergoes experimental spinal surgery

Dr. Richi Gill was in a freak accident on a boogie board during a family vacation in Hawaii

Sex abuse survivors to meet with Vatican summit organizers

Pope Francis has urged participants to meet with abuse victims before they came to Rome

Ex-FBI official: ‘Crime may have been committed’ by Trump

Andrew McCabe said FBI had good reason to open a counterintelligence investigation into whether Trump was in league with Russia

Okanagan College professor awarded for promoting financial literacy

Leigh Sindlinger received a Distinguished Service Award for inspiring financial literacy in youth

Poll: What do you think of Family Day weekend’s move?

Until this year, Family Day has fallen on the second Monday in February

Sicamous farmer’s A2 milk could help those with trouble digesting dairy

The milk which contains no A1 beta-casein, a cause of digestive problems for some, hits stores soon

B.C. athlete takes home gold in freestyle aerials at Canada Games

Brayden Kuroda won the event with a combined score of 121.65.

Most Read