Frequently Asked Questions
- What are Physiotherapists?
- My doctor gave me a referral for another physiotherapy clinic but I would rather come to Nova Physiotherapy. Am I able to do this?
- Do I need a Doctor’s referral?
- Is physiotherapy covered by MSI?
- How long will my first appointment be?
- How long do follow up appointments take?
- What do I need to wear for physiotherapy?
- Do you have a gym?
- Heat vs Ice?
- I am covered through more than one extended health insurance plan, how does that work for billing?
- I was recently in a motor vehicle accident. How do I proceed?
- I was recently in a workplace accident. How do I proceed?
Physiotherapists are primary health care professionals who help people of all ages and lifestyles gait and maintain their desired level of active living and physical mobility. With their applied knowledge and understanding of the human body in action, physiotherapists are able to help you increase you mobility, relieve pain, build strength and improve balance and cardiovascular function. Physiotherapists not only treat injuries, they also teach you how to prevent the onset of pain or injury that may limit your activity.
– Canadian Physiotherapy Association.
Your Doctor may provide you with contact information for another physiotherapy clinic, however you are able to attend any physiotherapy clinic.
You will want to ensure that you receive physiotherapy services from an individual that is registered with the College of Physiotherapists of Nova Scotia. Please note that all of Nova Physiotherapy’s Physiotherapists are properly accredited and registered.
Physiotherapists are primary health care professionals, so you do not require a doctor’s referral to see one. However, some extended health insurance plans require a doctor’s referral in order for them to reimburse your physiotherapy claims.
The best way to find out whether your plan requires you to have a doctor’s referral or not would be to check your policy manual, call your insurance company to verify your plan details, or check with our administration team for more assistance.
MSI does not cover private physiotherapy in Nova Scotia; however, physiotherapy is covered through most extended health insurance plans. For more information on what MSI covers, please visit: http://www.gov.ns.ca/health/msi/.
For your first physiotherapy session, you will be required to come 15 minutes before your scheduled time to fill out our intake forms. Once you have been taken into the assessment room with your physiotherapist, your initial physiotherapy assessment will take approximately one hour.
Your follow up sessions can take up to 60 minutes each time you attend. After your initial assessment, your physiotherapist will be able to help you understand your individualized requirements and may alter your treatment length and type as needed.
When you are being treated for hips, legs, knees, or ankles, please bring a pair of shorts that you can change into. If you happen to forget a pair, we do have spares that are washed after each use that you can borrow.
If you are a female being treated for your back or neck, please bring a tank top. We do have Johnny shirts available for use during your treatment if you do not have one.
Do you have a gym?
In our Bedford and Timberlea clinics, we have cardiovascular equipment and universal weight machines.
Our Dartmouth Burnside clinic is located within a GoodLife Fitness Center and does have full access to their equipment for use during sessions. We also have an area within our clinic designated for exercise training and functional testing.
For full details on when you should use hot or cold for sprains and injuries, please consult the Canadian Physiotherapy Association information sheet at: http://www.physiotherapy.ca/PublicUploads/222460Hot%20or%20Cold%20Therapy.pdf.
There are many ways to be insured through an extended health insurance plan (e.g. Employer, School, Spouse, Parent). If you have multiple extended health insurance plans there is a specific order in which they are permitted to be used.
You are required to first exhaust your primary plan before being eligible to use your secondary plan.
Any plan that you hold as the plan member (the plan was purchased with your name as the primary contact) is your primary plan. If you have multiple plans that you are also the plan member of, then it is to be determined by your two insurers which would be considered your primary and which would be your secondary.
If you hold a plan through your spouse and are also a plan member of your own private plan, then you must first use your benefits from your own plan prior to being permitted the use of your secondary plan (your spouse’s).
If you are a dependent child covered through both parents, your primary and secondary plan is determined by your parents' birthdays. Whichever birthday falls on the first calendar month becomes your primary plan.
E.g. January comes before March, so the parent who was born in the month of January would be considered your primary plan holder. Therefore, the March parent’s plan would be your secondary plan. Their years of age have no significance to this, it is solely based on the month.
The MVA claims process can be a complicated one, so we hope that the information contained on this page will help guide you on the basics. Please feel free to contact our administration team if you have any additional questions as we are prepared to help you as much as we can through this process.
- Who is covered?
Whether you were a driver, passenger, cyclist, or pedestrian involved a car accident, you are eligible to file a claim with your Section B Insurer. Even if you are in a single vehicle incident by yourself, or if you cause a motor vehicle collision, you are still eligible for assistance.
- Who is my Section B Insurer?
If you were either the driver of or a passenger in the vehicle when the accident occurred, your Section B Insurer would be the insurance company covering the vehicle you were in. Even if your vehicle was not at fault, your Section B Insurer would still be your motor vehicle insurance company.
If you do not have insurance of your own or if you were a cyclist or pedestrian, you should contact and will likely be covered by the Section B Insurer of the vehicle involved that led to your injury.
- What are the steps to obtain approval for my Section B benefits?
If you have not done so yet, you will need to contact your Section B Insurer to inform them of the accident. They will send you out the appropriate paperwork to have filled out by yourself, employer and physician in order to get approval for your claim.
Depending on your Section B Insurer, you may need to see your family physician for a medical exam and a doctor's referral for physiotherapy and/or massage therapy prior to your Section B adjuster approving to reimburse you for your therapy services.
Each Section B Insurer has unique steps for approval and claim submissions and it is recommended that you contact them for further information and assistance.
- When can I go to a physiotherapist?
When your injuries are sustained as a result of a motor vehicle accident, you are able to directly access physiotherapy services to aid in your recovery. The sooner you schedule your first appointment, the faster we will be able to address your concerns.
- Who pays for my treatments once my claim is approved?
Any private coverage you may have through your work, spouse, or school (Blue Cross, Great-West Life, etc.) must be exhausted prior to your Section B Insurer assuming responsibility for your services in an approved claim.
If your private insurance pays for only part of the accrued expenses, Nova Physiotherapy, in most cases, is permitted to directly invoice your Section B Insurer for the remaining balances. If your Section B Insurer does not accept direct billing then you yourself will be responsible to pay the charges at the end of each session and then submit your receipts to your Section B adjuster for reimbursement.
Our Physiotherapists will file frequent reports to your Section B Insurer to request continued approval for your treatments. The frequency and length of your physiotherapy will be determined together by your Physiotherapist and Section B Insurer.
If your Section B Insurer denies an extension for treatment but you would like to continue to receive physiotherapy treatments, you will be responsible to pay for your services.
It is important to keep a record of all medical, physiotherapy, travel, and loss of income expenses incurred as a result of your motor vehicle accident as Section B will cover certain expenses that are not covered by your primary insurance. If your expenses were not covered by your primary insurance or your Section B Insurer, legal action may be of more assistance in receiving reimbursements for your expenses.
It may be helpful to consult a lawyer for additional assistance on how to get covered. For more information please visit: http://www.lawyerfortheinjured.ca/car_accidents.shtml
- What information do you need from me on my first appointment?
On your first visit, please bring all your Section B Insurer’s information. This includes any of the following that you may have already received:
- Your claim adjuster’s name
- Your claim adjuster’s contact information (phone, fax, email)
- Your claim number
The WCB claims process can be a complicated one, so we hope that the information contained on this page will help guide you on the basics of the process. Please feel free to contact our administration team if you have any additional questions as we are prepared to help you as much as we can through this process.
- What is the Workers’ Compensation Board of Nova Scotia (WCB)?
The Workers Compensation Board of Nova Scotia is funded entirely by the employers in Nova Scotia. The WCB provides insurance to employees injured at their workplaces. They provide help to employers in the prevention of workplace injury and if injuries result, they are there to support the employees to initiate a timely return to a safe workplace.
- Basic Steps To Get Your Workplace Injury Covered by the WCB:
Step 1: Inform your Employer and Healthcare Provider that you sustained your injury at your workplace and have them submit their reports to WCB
The WCB receives various reports regarding your claim, these are required in order to generate your claim number and have your claim assessed for approval. Your first report would either be an Injury Report from your employer, or an Intake Report from your healthcare provider (Doctor, Hospital, Physiotherapist, Chiropractor, or Occupational Therapist).
The WCB Accident Report is provided, completed and sent to WCB by your employer. This report must be completed and sent to WCB within five business days of the accident or illness. Both the employer and the injured worker must complete and sign this form together unless, due to the seriousness of the injury, the worker is unable to sign. A copy of the WCB Injury Report form can be found online here.
Additional reports from your healthcare team are submitted periodically. For claims that are approved for physiotherapy treatments specifically, the physiotherapist will complete progress reports and functional abilities reports (where applicable) biweekly. Physiotherapy reports are always faxed in to your doctor, employer representative, and the WCB.
Step 2: A claim number and Case Worker is assigned to you and your claim goes into review. At this time, your claim is not yet approved but is set to pending status.
Once WCB reviews the reports that have been submitted by your Employer and/or your healthcare provider, they then assess the claim based on the type of injury and what they expect will be required as a result of your injury. The claim is then assigned to the appropriate case worker based on this information.
Depending on the severity of your injury, the WCB may assign a case worker and a return-to-work assistant to your claim. Both of these contacts are there to help you through the claims process and to answer any questions you or your health care providers might have regarding your claim.
Step 3: Your claim status changes from pending to approved or denied.
Your case worker reviews all of the information that has been sent to them from you, your employer, and your health care providers. The information that is compiled helps the case worker determine whether your claim is approved or not.
If your claim is approved: You are now eligible to receive reimbursements and/or paid medical treatments. Each service or cost you incur does require your case workers pre-approval, so to avoid you incurring an expense that WCB will not reimburse you for ensure that you contact your case worker periodically.
If your claim is not approved: You may still seek medical treatments for your injury, however, at your own expense. These treatments may be eligible for reimbursement through your own private plan, such as Blue Cross, Great-West Life, etc. If you believe that your WCB claim was denied inappropriately you may appeal your decision. For more information about the appeals process, please check out the WCB site here.
- Where can I find the Travel Expenses Form and how does that work?
When you have an approved WCB Claim, often the WCB will reimburse you for specific travel expenses. They may also reimburse you for meals and/or accommodations. These expenses generally require pre-approval with your case worker and it is best practice to contact them before incurring an expense.
The WCB requires you to complete the travel expense form and to attach all original receipts to the form in order to reimburse you for the expenses. You can download, print and complete the travel expense form here.
Once the form is completed, you can fax it along with your receipts to the WCB at 491-8001 or you can mail it to 5668 South Street, Halifax, NS, B3J 2Y2.
- When can I go to a Physiotherapist?
When your injuries are sustained as a result of a work-related accident, you are able to directly access physiotherapy services to aid in your recovery. The sooner you schedule your first appointment, the faster we will be able to address your concerns. You can even contact us to schedule your first appointment the same day you are injured.
- What information do you need from me on my first appointment?
On your first visit please bring the following:
- Employer Contact Name (ie: Supervisor, Health & Safety Rep, etc)
- Employer Contact Number & Fax, if available
- Date of Your Injury
- Social Insurance Number
- Health Card Number
If you have already filed your claim with WCB, please bring your claim and case worker’s information. This would include any of the following that you may have already received:
- Your case worker’s name
- Your case worker’s contact information (phone, fax, email)
- Your claim number