Are Australians moving around enough? Arguably, no – with the ABS reporting that “only 43% of adults actually met the “sufficiently active’ threshold”.2 Many of us strive to do better when it comes to our health and physical fitness. But sometimes there are significant barriers to these goals, like injury and recurring medical issues.

If your health is being affected by a condition that could be treated with physiotherapy, you’re in luck! Soon, you’ll be back on the path to physical perfection. Let’s look at what health insurance policy holders have access to when it comes to physio treatment.

Why get covered for physiotherapy treatment?

You should consider coverage for physiotherapy benefits for this reason: it could save you money! According to health insurer HCF, “… The highest out-of-pocket expense for physiotherapy is at the initial consultation, where the physiotherapist diagnoses the problem and designs a treatment plan.”

You may pay next to nothing for a diagnosis and treatment plan, depending on your policy. Even if your initial consultation doesn’t solve your condition, at least you’ve saved some money in the first place.

Money aside, physiotherapy could do wonders for your quality of life. A study from 2008, for example, shows that early intervention by a physiotherapist greatly reduced the discomfort in a group of patients suffering from lower back pain.1

When do you need to visit a physio?

If you’ve developed (or have been living with) a movement disorder, physiotherapy may be just the thing to get you moving. Your GP, occupational therapist, or a healthcare professional may refer you to a physio. In these cases, all you need to worry about is fitting it into your busy schedule!

However, it may not always be clear cut if you should go to the doctor or the physio. You do not need a referral in order to see a physiotherapist, which means there’ll be instances where you need to decide whether to go or not. For example, say you have some persistent tightness in your calf muscle after work each day. It’s not a medical emergency, but a quick consultation with a physio may provide a quick solution.

If you’re unsure, it never hurts to check with your GP if you want a first opinion.

How long will I have to wait until I can get covered?

Extras cover waiting periods are set by each insurer, not by the government. Therefore, you may find that your waiting periods will vary depending on which fund you take out a policy with.  Once you sit these waiting periods, however, you don’t have to do so again when switching policies – provided you maintain the same level of cover.

That being said, PHIO outline some general waiting periods on their site. It states that you can expect to wait 2 months before you can start claiming on physiotherapy treatment, as a general rule of thumb.3

As for how many physio sessions you can claim in one year, the amount will vary from product to product. If you want to learn more, you should start shopping around. Our comparison service will help you choose a product well-suited to your situation, so start comparing health insurance today!

Sources

  1. http://ajp.physiotherapy.asn.au/AJP/vol_54/4/AustJPhysiotherv54i4Lau.pdf
  2. http://www.abs.gov.au/ausstats/abs@.nsf/Lookup/4364.0.55.004Chapter1002011-12
  3. http://www.ombudsman.gov.au/__data/assets/pdf_file/0017/35612/09115-CO_Waiting-periods-04.pdf

So, what are you waiting for?

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