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Is physiotherapy and chiropractic care expensive and are they covered by my health insurance?

Physiotherapy and chiropractic care forms an essential component to health and wellness. Each insurance plan is different. Many cover these treatments. Your Physiomed clinic can help you understand your coverage.

What is Chiropractic?

Chiropractic is one of the largest primary contact health care professions in North America, treating tens of millions of patients annually without the use of drugs or surgery. The practice of Chiropractic focuses on the relationship between structure (mainly the spine) and function (as coordinated by the nervous system) and how that relationship affects the restoration and preservation of optimal health. The primary goal of chiropractic manipulation, also referred to as adjustment, is to treat areas of decreased movement in the joints, thereby reducing pain and increasing joint function and improving overall health.

How large is the chiropractic profession?

There are over 6,000 chiropractors in Canada and over 60,000 in the US.

How many people see chiropractors?

This varies by region, but is generally between 5-15% of the population. Experts agree that anyone in the general population is a candidate for chiropractic.

What education do chiropractors have?

All licensed Chiropractors must study an intensive four year curriculum of academic and clinical education. Chiropractic students obtain their clinical experience as an intern at a teaching clinic, alongside an experienced doctor. In addition, most chiropractic programs require an undergraduate degree for admittance. Following successful study, the candidates receive their Doctor of Chiropractic, or DC. Chiropractors must have a license to practice.

Do I have to see my medical doctor before I see a chiropractor?

No, you do not need an MD referral to see a Chiropractor. Chiropractors are legislated as primary contact health care professionals in every province in Canada, i.e., patients can consult them directly. Some private insurance providers may require an MD referral to cover certain treatments. Your Chiropractor can explain in more detail your particular situation.

Are there many athletes who use chiropractic?

Many athletes rely on chiropractic care to maintain their peak performance, including professional sports teams. The National Olympic Teams also rely on chiropractic to keep the athletes in top physical form.

Does chiropractic care require X-rays?

Chiropractic care should form part of your health and wellness program. Prior to commencing any health program, you should undergo a complete assessment which will likely include medical history, orthopaedic exam, x-rays, posture analysis, gait assessment amongst other tests.

How do you find a good chiropractor?

There is no formal ranking of chiropractors. You might look for your chiropractor the same way you look for your family doctor or dentist: ask your friends and family, visit clinics in person looking for a professional and friendly atmosphere. There are fewer schools for chiropractic than for MDs or dentists so you will likely find many chiropractors graduating from the same place. Physiomed only selects the top chiropractors and health professionals to join our team. Each of our staff must pass a rigorous evaluation procedure to qualify to be a Physiomed health care provider.

Do chiropractors treat conditions other than back pain?

Yes. Chiropractors assess and treat the whole body. We recognize that different people and bodies react differently to treatment methods. That is why Physiomed offers a wide range of treatments, to ensure we can develop the right wellness program for anyone.

Is it OK to see a chiropractor if I’m pregnant?

Yes. Physiomed doctors have treated countless mothers-to-be. Our patients have achieved excellent results in managing discomfort and other back conditions related to their pregnancy.

What is Physiotherapy?

Physiotherapy is the primary health care profession that promotes wellness, mobilitiy and independent function.

Can Physiotherapy help me?

Physiotherapists manage and prevent many physical problems caused by illness, disability and disease, sport and work related injuries, aging, and long periods of inactivity. Physiotherapists are skilled in the assessment and hands-on management of a broad range of conditions that affect the muscoskeletal, circulatory, respiratory and nervous systems.

How does Physiotherapy work?

Physiotherapists assess and analyze the effect of illness, disability, injury and inactivity and develop specific treatment plans based on their assessment and the individual client’s goals.

How will I know if it’s working?

The goals you establish with your Physiotherapist are used to measure your progress. Your physiotherapy treatment plan will be as unique and individual as you are, and your active participation will be essential for success.

Do I need a referral from a doctor for Physiotherapy?

No. Physiotherapists are primary health care professionals (just like doctors and dentists) meaning you can go directly to a Physiotherapist. You do not require a doctor’s referral to see a Physiotherapist. Insurance companies, however, sometimes require a doctor’s referral before they will reimburse cost.

Will my insurance cover Physiotherapy treatment?

Funding of Physiotherapy services varies across Canada. Generally, treatments provided in a hospital setting are covered by provincial health insurance plans. Funding varies when services are offered outside a hospital. Be sure to ask your Physiotherapist for details. Most extended health insurance policies cover some Physiotherapy services. All provinces allow Physiotherapists in private practice to bill clients directly or to bill third-party payors–such as insurance companies and workers’ compensation boards.

What should I look for in a qualified Physiotherapist?

Physiotherapists are credentialed, university-educated health professionals. Ask your Physiotherapist about:
a) University degree in Physiotherapy
b) License/Registration
c) Membership in the Canadian Physiotherapy Association


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