What is a Virtual Physiotherapy Session/Telehealth/Telemedicine?
Due to the current state of affairs, the Canadian Physiotherapy Association, and the provincial colleges, including the College of Physiotherapists of Ontario are advocating for Virtual Physiotherapy Sessions. These are ONLINE sessions that enable the practitioner and patient to communicate by video conference to perform either assessments and treatments. For those who don’t have access to a video platform we can also offer our services by telephone.
How is this different than an in-clinic session?
Virtual sessions are not very different than physical in-clinic sessions! We will begin by taking a clear subjective history to gather information regarding your pain, area of injury, signs, symptoms, etc. We will then guide you through an assessment that will include physical movement of the injured area and watch for compensations, asymmetric variations, and/or pain responses. As always, we will test several different structures to determine the problematic tissue(s). We can then offer a clinical diagnosis, as well as education relating to your injury, and a home exercise program that may include stretches and/or strengthening exercises. Additionally, we will direct you to a physician if we believe you require imaging or further testing.
Can I still book a Virtual Physiotherapy Session if I have pelvic floor-related pain?
Yes! We often find that Virtual Sessions can be more effective for subjective history-taking, education, and exercise prescription for pelvic floor-related pain. It is an excellent medium of 1-on-1 communication without distractions and complete privacy in the comfort of your home.
What do I need for a Virtual Session?
You can use any device of your choosing, including a smart phone, tablet, or laptop. Please make sure that your camera and microphone are turned “ON” during the session.
Telemedicine will require you to have access to a phone either land line or cell phone
Is the video conference secure?
Yes, we do NOT use regular video conferencing software. We are currently using Insig Health, which is a secure and privately encrypted software program that ensures full confidentiality of the session and all related documents and patient charts. We will also send you a consent form to virtually sign before your first session.
How long does a session take?
Assessments will take 45-60 minutes, and regular treatments will be 30-40 minutes.
How many sessions will I need?
This is highly variable and depends entirely on your injury. If you have acute pain, we will likely need to follow-up 2-3x/week to ensure you are responding well to your home exercise and care program, or to determine if we need to change some exercises. The frequency of sessions will continue decreasing as you improve and are able to manage better on your own. If you are seeking a strengthening or postural program, you may only need to check in 1x/week to monitor and progress your exercises. Your physiotherapist will discuss this with you in further detail.
What should I wear? Do I need any equipment?
Please be dressed in comfortable gym attire to move appropriately and allow the injured area to be seen, e.g., shorts for a knee, tank top for a shoulder. We also suggest you have an open space to move easily and a yoga mat or carpeted area in case we ask you to perform movements on the floor.
Will my insurance company pay?
Most major insurance companies are currently paying for Virtual Physiotherapy Sessions, including MVA assessments and treatments. We suggest you call your insurance company or adjustor if you have any questions or concerns.
How can I book an appointment?
Please contact Fairlawn by phone or email. We will then reach out to you to book an appointment during a time that is mutually suitable for you and the physiotherapist. You will then be booked into the system and will receive an EMAIL, including the time and date of your session. When that date and time arrives, you only need to log into that email and click on the link. Alternatively, this information and link can be sent to you via TEXT. The link opens up your session, and your physiotherapist will be waiting for you on the virtual platform!