What should you do first after a vehicle collision in Calgary?
No one plans to be rear-ended on Memorial Drive or spin out on Deerfoot Trail, but it happens. You'll notice some aches and pains may start to creep up on you as the initial shock of the car collision wears off. The most important thing for you to know is that you should book in quickly with a Physiotherapist or Chiropractor after any Motor Vehicle Collision (MVC, also known as an MVA). To start, contact your insurance company. Have them send you a "Notice of Loss and Proof of Claim form", also called an "AB1".
Seek treatment for your injuries, even if they seem minor. Book in for an assessment with your Physiotherapist or Chiropractor within 10 days of your collision. Remember, sooner is better and no, you don't need to see your family doctor first, unless your insurance requires it.
The most common injuries are sprains and strains. We see these soft tissue injuries to your ligaments, tendons and/or muscles all the time and will work with you to get back on track.
What we're really looking for in any MVA related concern is whiplash and concussion. Whiplash-Associated Disorders (WAD) relate to an injury of your neck. Your treating practitioner will be able to determine the severity of your injury and will guide you through your recovery process.
Who pays for the therapy?
If you are diagnosed with a WAD 1 or WAD 2 injury, your Motor Vehicle Insurance pays.
If you are diagnosed with a WAD 3 injury, you must access your own extended health benefits first. Once they are exhausted, your Motor Vehicle Insurance pays.
Based on the degree and severity of your injury, you will be granted up to 10 or 21 treatments. These treatments must be completed within 90 days following the date of your accident.
In some cases, treatment can be extended with the approval of your treating practitioner and your adjuster, but not always, so book in within 10 days of the initial injury.
Why 90 days?
Some of the research we have been part of over the years has demonstrated the difference between a whiplash disorder and a facet joint issue. Typically, when symptoms persist past 90 days, the facet joints should be investigated and the typical timelines for healing are affected. Billing rules change based on provincial regulations as well after the 90 day mark.
Will Momentum Health Direct Bill?
Yes! Please bring the following to your first appointment:
- Name of the insurance company
- Name and phone number of your adjuster
- Claim number
- Date of accident
- If your accident happened while working, then WCB (Workers’ Compensation Board) paperwork may be required. Please be prepared to answer questions in regards to previous treatments for your injuries due to the motor vehicle accident.
In terms of payment, costs are legislated by the province of Alberta, under what's called the Diagnostic and Treatment Protocols Regulation (DTPR). In the latest revision (2020), multiple practitioners, including dentistry and psychology were added. It's a little convoluted though, so please rely on us to be your guide through the process.
Your treating practitioner will communicate with your adjuster as needed and help to complete any required information. They will also work with you to determine the best treatment plan to meet your goals.
Your treating practitioner will give you a thorough assessment and treatment on your first visit and discuss your treatment plan with you.
Throughout your treatment there will be ongoing re-assessment to ensure effectiveness of treatment and to maximize your functional recovery in a timely fashion. We are here to help make your rehabilitation and funding process proceed as easily as possible!
FAQs for car accidents and vehicular collision related injuries
Q: Do I have to be seen by a physician before I can start receiving treatment?
A: No! Under the Diagnostic and Treatment Protocols Regulation of the Alberta Government, Physiotherapists and Chiropractors are considered primary care practitioners. Any medical assessment required to begin treatment following your motor vehicle accident can be performed by one of our trusted clinicians. Following your assessment the clinician will then coordinate with your insurance company to ensure you are getting the proper treatment for your specific injuries.
Q: Does it matter if I see a Physiotherapist or Chiropractor first?
A: Not really! At Momentum Health, our clinicians will collaborate with each other to ensure you see the right person for your needs, whether it is someone with additional dry needle training or concussion and vestibular experience.
WCB claims need to stay with one practitioner, but MVA/MVC claims can be seen by multiple clinicians.
Q: What does my coverage include if I am injured in an accident?
A: With motor vehicle claims, you will be entitled to a specified number of treatments, depending on the type and severity of your injuries. Such services can include a combination of physiotherapy, chiropractic and massage. The type and duration of needed treatments will be determined at your assessment. We will take a full hour with you on your first visit to ensure we have a complete picture of what we are looking at together.
Q: How do I book in for my motor vehicle accident?
A: If you have been in a motor vehicle accident, you should first report the injury to your insurance company to begin an injury claim. Once you have the claim started and have been issued a claim number from your adjustor, you can contact the clinic to be booked in for a motor vehicle accident assessment. After your assessment, we take care of the rest!
Q: What if I have Whiplash? Can you help?
A: Yes! It sometimes takes up to 48 hours for whiplash symptoms to show up but is one of the most common symptoms we see after any collision, impact or even a fall. From exercises to soft tissue treatment, we will get you on the right track to recovery.
Q: Can I come see Momentum Health if I'm on Assignment or Out of Protocol with my Lawyer?
A: Yes! Momentum Health will accept Out of Protocol, Assignment of Proceeds clients for Physiotherapy and Chiropractic services. To discuss setting up an Assignment of Proceeds, lawyers or patients can call your closest clinic directly or if you need assistance finding which of our 8 locations is the most convenient, call our Care Center at (403) 455-0025 and we would be happy to assist you.