How Our Physiotherapists Can Help After a Car Accident
By Jen Goehring, Physiotherapist
If you have joined us for this blog, it’s likely because you were unfortunately involved in a motor vehicle accident (MVA). Aside from all the initial drama and figuring out how to get from point A to point B for the foreseeable future, you may have tweaked your neck, back, or another body area, which is causing you pain.
Following a car accident there is immediately a big to-do list. Paperwork and many phone calls to different people which can be quite overwhelming. This is before you can even think about getting on your road to recovery and we completely get it! We often guide our clients through the whole process from the beginning to the end to make it as easy as possible to navigate. That’s why we put together this simple 5 step guide so you can find most of the information regarding your injuries in one place.
Step #1: Report Your Accident to Your Insurance Company
Give your insurance company a call at your earliest convenience to report your car accident. They will be able to give you all the information and documents necessary to kickstart your claim and begin getting your vehicle (and body) fixed.
Step #2: Book an Appointment with Your Medical Doctor or Pop Into a Walk-In Clinic
It is important to see a medical professional as soon after your car accident as possible so they can assess any injuries you may have and appropriately triage you for care.
Step #3: Give Our Clinic a Call to Book in for a Physiotherapy Assessment
If you are experiencing any aches and pains throughout your body, then please give our clinic a call to book an appointment. It is most common that following a car accident, your aches and pains will intensify a few days later. It is important that you try to get an assessment by one of our Physiotherapists within the first 10 days following the date of your accident to follow the Alberta guidelines and allow our team the time to fill out the proper paperwork. Please let our front desk know this at the time of your booking so we can accommodate you.
What Can You Expect at Your First Appointment Following Your Car Accident?
Our team will guide you through all the required paperwork to submit your injury claim. You are required to fill out a form called an AB-1 which is the “Notice of Loss and Proof of Claim Form” from your perspective. We will happily provide these forms to you at your first appointment and submit this to your insurance company on your behalf.
At the time of your appointment, it is also helpful if you bring us your insurance company information and any adjuster/case number you may already have. This allows us to easily communicate with your insurance company about your injuries and bill the appointments on your behalf.
After you have completed your paperwork, you will meet with your Physiotherapist for a through assessment. This will include the following:
- Your therapist asking a detailed history about what happened during the car accident, your pain and other symptoms, and any other pertinent medical information you want to provide.
- Your therapist conducting a thorough assessment of each body part that has been injured.
- Your Physiotherapist providing you with your diagnosis.
- Your diagnosis will determine your eligibility for a number of treatments.
- You will also be given a full treatment on your first visit, as well as a treatment plan for sessions moving forward.
After your first appointment, our team will submit your AB-1 and AB-2 (Treatment Plan from your Physiotherapist) on your behalf to your insurance company. Following this, you don’t have to worry about the paperwork for your injury claim – our team will easily take care of submission and follow up with your insurance company so you can focus on healing!
Step #4: Start Attending Treatments
The number of treatments that you are eligible for depends on your diagnosis and the length of time since your accident took place. The majority of patients fall into a category called “under protocol”, which is defined as seeking treatments within 90 days of the date of your accident. Most injuries are categorized as such so that you are eligible for 21 total visits that need to be completed within those 90 days. Treatments can include: Physiotherapy, Massage Therapy, Chiropractic Care, and Acupuncture. In addition to in-person treatments, you are also eligible for some equipment that can be used at home to get you on the road to recovery. On the odd chance that you don’t fit into this category of treatments, our team will guide you through the step-by-step process.
Step #5: Recovery and Discharge
Well, what if you’re not better after those initial 90 days? Not to worry! Our team will get in touch with your adjuster to discuss your progress and propose the expected new treatment plan that will include a number of visits over a certain timeframe. This puts you into the next category called “Section B”. It means that we are required to submit the treatment costs to your extended health benefits first and the remainder will be billed to your MVA insurance. The nice part is that Stride Physiotherapy will direct bill this all on your behalf!
You have two full years following the date of your car accident to claim any medical appointments related to your injuries. Once you get back to feeling 100%, we will discharge you from care! The great news? We are still here for you whenever you need us, and we can help navigate potential problems that you may experience in the future. If you have any further questions about this, feel free to give our team a call or you can book an appointment by clicking here.