Effective date: February 1, 2016
Application: All injured workers requiring physical therapy services.
Policy subject: Health care services – providers
To provide administrative guidelines for approving and evaluating physical therapy services.
- Upon Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB) approval, a worker is entitled to benefits under The Workers’ Compensation Act, 2013 (the “Act”) states that upon approval by the Workers’ Compensation Board (WCB), a worker entitled to benefits is also entitled to (Section 103):
- Any medical aid that may be necessary because of the work-related injury.
- Any other treatment by a health care provider.
- Any orthotic appliance or apparatus that may be necessary as a result of the injury, and
- Any travel and sustenance costs associated with receiving medical treatment as a result of the injury.
- The WCB is authorized to determine health care services fees (Section 104).
- Physical therapists who are members in good standing of the Saskatchewan College of Physical Therapists (SCPT) and accredited by the WCB to provide services to injured customers can access the following at www.wcbsask.com:
- The Accreditation Standards and Service Provider Guidelines for Physical Therapists Providing Out-Patient and Private Clinic Services to WCB customers (“practice standards”).
- Accreditation requirements.
- The Primary Chiropractic and Physical Therapy Soft Tissue Treatment Guidelines.
- Reporting forms, and
- Primary Authorization to Treat forms.
The Saskatchewan Physiotherapy Association (SPA) and the WCB will negotiate changes to these documents as needed.
- The WCB Physical Therapy Consultant will review files that have two or more progress reports (PTP). A Operations staff may request the assistance of the WCB Physical Therapy Consultant at any time during the review of claims.
- HCS will contact, by phone and in writing, physiotherapists (PT’s) that continually send initial reports (PTI’s) or progress/discharge reports (PTP) late to the WCB. If late reporting continues, HCS will issue a final warning and the WCB will not pay for services that the PTs provide after the reports are due.
- The WCB will only reimburse functional conditioning treatment for customers after they have been unable to return to regular or modified work duties for at least four consecutive weeks. If the worker needs functional conditioning before then, the PT will contact the WCB. The WCB Physical Therapy Consultant will review the worker’s progress before making a decision.
- The WCB will accept PTI’s or a Physical Therapy Initial Recurrent (PTIR) submitted for recurrent treatment (i.e., if primary care resumes after the customer was discharged more than 30 days prior or where the customer accesses primary care after a secondary or tertiary program). The operations staff and the WCB Physical Therapy Consultant will review the report and advise the clinic if further treatment will be approved.
- For all soft tissue injuries, the Operations staff will review the customer’s file at seven weeks post-injury to:
- Evaluate the risk of prolonged recovery.
- Determine if the worker needs an assessment team review.
- Ensure vocational (return-to-work) interventions are occurring, and
- Ensure that the PT is using the WCB’s standards of care and treatment protocols.
- If the WCB denies a physical therapy claim for coverage (following the initial assessment or request for further treatments), the WCB will pay for services up to the date of notification. The WCB will charge the costs of these claims to the administrative fund.
- Compliance with the practice standards may be evaluated through a clinical survey process.
(1) Fee schedule and practice standards updated January 1, 2020. Procedure reviewed and no changes required.
(2) PRO 52/2014, Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective April 1, 2014 to January 31, 2016).
(3) PRO 52/2013, Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective July 1, 2013 to March 31, 2014).
(4) PRO 64/2011, Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective January 1, 2012 to June 30, 2013).
(5) PRO 53/2011 Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective January 1, 2009 to December 31, 2011). Prorated fees billed to the next full 20 minute unit of care effective February 1, 2011.
(6) PRO 60/2010, Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective January 1, 2011; however superseded by PRO 53/2011, which was approved June 8, 2011 and made effective as of January 1, 2009). Effective February 1, 2011, fee code 97 was added in response to WCB Request for PFI Rating Info and prorated fees were updated to be billed to the next highest one-third hour.
(7) PRO 50/2009, Medical Fees – Physical Therapy Services (effective January 1, 2008 to December 31, 2008).
(8) PRO 51/2007, Medical Fees – Physical Therapists (effective January 1, 2006 to December 31, 2007).
(9) POL 100/2002, Medical Fees – Physical Therapists (effective April 1, 2001 to December 31, 2005).
(10) PRO 50/1999, Medical Fees – Physical Therapists (effective April 1, 1999 to March 31, 2001).
(11) PRO 05/98, Medical Fees - Physical Therapists (effective April 1, 1998 to March 31, 1999).
(12) PRO 03/97, Medical Fees – Physical Therapists (effective April 1, 1997 to March 31, 1998).
(13) ADM 03/96, Physical Therapy Service Standards and Fees (effective January 1, 1996 to March 31, 1997).
(14) Board Order 02/93, Medical Fees – Private Sector Physiotherapy (effective April 1, 1991 to December 31, 1995).
(15) Board Order 16/91, Medical Fees – Private Sector Physiotherapy (effective April 1, 1991; however superseded by Bd Order 02/93, which was approved February 4, 1993 and made effective as of April 1, 1991).